Repost from the old site.
The IQ scores of Southeast Asian groups are not well-known. The best source, and it is not very good at all, is Richard Lynn’s chart from IQ and Global Inequality. Richard Lynn is a hardcore racist, typical of most hereditarian IQ researchers. Let us look at some of the scores he has come up with:
IQ World average 88 Laos 89 Cambodia 90 (est.) Thailand 91 Vietnam 95 Hmong --
The Vietnam score is quite suspect. I don’t know exactly how he did it, but he seems to have averaged scores from surrounding countries to come up with his score. Lynn needs to do this because he has some strange theories about how IQ developed. He thinks that IQ is shaped by going through the Ice Age.
Philippe Rushton, another hardcore academic racist, goes along with this. Their followers claim that Europeans went through two ice ages, one 70,000 years ago and another 10,000-20,000 years ago. Truth is that the Toba Volcano explosion in Indonesia 73,000 years ago not only wiped out all the pre-Europeans, but also killed every other human being west of the explosion, through Asia, the Middle East and even Africa.
It is thought that a group as small as 5,000, probably situated on the western slope of Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa, made it through the explosion and ensuing decade of frigid nuclear winter. In addition to killing the humans, most other forms of life were probably also killed by this explosion.
A few years after the explosion, humanity seems to have gone through a serious bottleneck. No doubt major changes took place, including selection for intelligence. It is at this time that we see something called The Great Leap Forward in Eastern Africa. Art, language, and a huge cultural explosion take place in only a few years. Humanity then explodes out of Africa to populate the world.
We have no way of knowing what any race’s IQ was 10,000’s of years ago, and it is silly to even guess. Furthermore, European-type Caucasians do not appear until about 10,000-13,000 years ago, probably in the Middle East and then spreading into Europe.
Earlier than that, proto-Caucasoid skulls do not look much like modern-day Europeans. So it appears that the “European race” (that doesn’t really exit, see here) didn’t even go through any ice age in Europe anyway. That neato White skin comes later.
Over in Northeast Asia, we have a different story. Supposedly, these high-IQ folks evolved in the frigid cold of Siberia. The problem with that is that modern NE Asians do not even appear until about 9,000 years ago. Before that, NE Asians do not look like the NE Asians of today.
Instead, they look something like Aborigines or the Ainu. They are also said to look like Negritos and Polynesians. These specimens were from the Zhoukoudian Cave in Northern China. The Ainu, who are also said to have Aborigine features, are thought to be the proto-NE Asians. The proto-NE Asian group seems to have had its homeland around Lake Baikal about 35,000 years ago.
So it looks like the people we call NE Asians today did not go through any Ice Age either.
But, getting back to the Vietnam score.
Richard Lynn’s theory will not support highly intelligent Asians, not to mention SE Asians, since they did not go through his famous Ice Age. However, all Asians came out of the proto-Asian homeland in Northern Vietnam and Southern China around 60-110,000 years ago. From there, they fanned out across SE Asia, Southern China and NE Asia.
The crucial point is that SE Asians, including Southern Chinese, did not go through Lynn’s famous Ice Age brain gauntlet. Therefore, they cannot be real smart, according to Lynn. Except that some of them, which causes a problem for Mr. Lynn’s theory.
Indeed, Lynn puts SE Asian IQ at 87 and considers them about the 4th most intelligent group on the planet, behind NE Asians, European Caucasians, and Eskimos.
Lynn’s theory also presupposes a relationship between latitude and race. So we can’t have any smarties down there in the hot weather. They all have to come from frigid land, where their IQ’s got nice and refrigerated. Problem is that evidence shows that Central regions actually produce more geniuses than Northern or Southern regions.
In order to fit the facts into his dubious theory, Lynn plays a lot of games. He refuses to note that Southern Chinese are some of the smartest people on Earth – their IQ is thought to be ~105, or possibly higher. The Chinese provinces around Hong Kong have often produced some of the brightest Chinese cohorts in the land.
Further, we can’t have any real bright SE Asians either, for the same reasons as for the Southern Chinese, and also so as not to mess up his SE Asian IQ of 87.
Which brings us to the Vietnamese. The Vietnamese IQ of 95 is incorrect, and Lynn is apparently deliberately distorting it to move his fake theory along. I think he got it by dividing the Thai IQ by the Chinese IQ, which he falsely puts at ~100 (The urban IQ is something like ~105, and Lynn dishonestly assumes that the rural areas have a 10 pt lower IQ, so he divides and gets 100). Nice trick, huh?
Interestingly, Southern Chinese, though presumably high IQ and though they dominate the economy of Vietnam as businessmen, reportedly do poorly in school in Vietnam.
Well, the Vietnamese forums are hopping mad about this. It’s interesting that all of the Asian forums are very interested in the IQ scores for their countries. I think that is due to a characteristic Asian introverted personality that takes this stuff seriously, more than them being especially brainy.
So I did some digging around.
Two studies in Vietnam were done over the past six years, one in 2001 and another in 2006, both at secondary schools. The one in 2001 found an IQ of IQ of 101. The 2006 study found an IQ of 98 . Averaging the two together gives us a Vietnamese IQ of 99.5. That is quite respectable, and smashes Lynn’s clever little theory to bits.
Based on that high IQ, the future looks hopeful for both the nation of Vietnam and Vietnamese in the US. Vietnamese in the US often perform very well. In Orange County, California, they are reportedly the highest performing ethnic group.
Another interesting group is the Hmong. The Hmong are a primitive tribe in Laos, Vietnam, Thailand and China. They helped the US fight Communism in Laos and were persecuted after the war by the Pathet Lao regime. The Hmong really didn’t give a damn about Communism or capitalism or any of that, as they were just swidden agriculturalists up in the north of Laos near the Plain of Jars.
They also did a bit of hunting and gathering. Their cultural level was not very high. They were considered the “hillbillies of Asia” and to some extent, they still are. Many NE Asians look down on them, as they look down on SE Asians in general. One NE Asian on a forum described the Hmong as “the worst of all. We would rather marry a White person than one of them.”
Well, I beg to differ. I have worked with these people in the past teaching Hmong adults ESL and I really enjoyed them. Actually, I enjoyed all the SE Asian students. They have some problems here in the US, as they came here after years in refugee camps with little more than the shirts on their backs.
I recall an anecdote I heard about the Hmong at an educational conference. They were living in these squalid refugee camps amidst some pretty bad conditions. But in one building in the camp, English was being taught. There was not enough room for the Hmong of all ages to be taught there, so many could not get in. So they went home? Forget it!
Mobs crowded around the windows, trying to see the teacher and listen to the lesson. As you can see, an intelligent group or individual, even when exposed to an impoverished environment, will often seek out stimulation wherever they can find it.
I recall another story from India about a boy in a small village who was very bright. There was nothing going on in the village, so he walked hours every day to a bookshop in a nearby town and spent all day there reading books.
High IQ seeks out stimulating environments, which then enrich the mind further, which then drives further stimulation-seeking. In this way, genetics and IQ drive each other, for better or worse throughout life, and it is for this reason that it is almost impossible to untangle genetics from environment in intelligence, not to mention a host of other things.
Well, I finally found a report on the Net of a test of Hmong IQ. This is apparently the first test ever made on the Hmong IQ, and I’m going to publish it here and get all the laurels. The test was done in the US in a school district, and the Hmong students scored quite low, an 82.15 IQ. There were however extreme differences between a Performance IQ of 95 and a verbal IQ of 74.
Even the normal Asian gap between performance and verbal IQ is generally not that great. Furthermore, my friends who have worked with the Mien near Davis, California, say that the children do very well in school while living in profoundly deprived conditions in the home. The Mien are probably very closely related to the Hmong.
The fact that the children may have had difficulty with the English language cannot be ruled out. The 82.15 IQ is the lowest among mainland Asians and is below that of US Blacks, Hispanics and Amerindians. It is also below Samoans and Melanesians. I have spent years teaching in the public schools and taught thousands of Black, Hispanic and Samoan students in the Los Angeles area.
I have also spent some time with Hmong adults of all ages and a bit of time with Hmong children. My opinion was that they are highly intelligent and I find it very hard to believe that their IQ’s are lower than US Blacks (no attempt to put down the IQ scores of US Blacks, Hispanics or Samoans was made here). I feel that as the Hmong stay in the US longer, the IQ scores will rise quite a bit.
Keep in mind these students typically come from extremely deprived environments. The Hmong may have more NE Asian genes than any other group in SE Asia, which makes the low IQ score even more suspect.
Two recent studies have been done on Thai IQ. One came up with a score of 87.5 and the other came up with a score of 92. In the latter test , scores were much worse in the North. The mean of the two tests is ~90 IQ. This is not far off from Lynn’s score.
On the Thai fora where I tracked the scores down Thai-Americans were disappointed in their performance and wished they could do better.
I found similar things at Khmer and Lao forums, where some of the higher IQ groups were baiting the SE Asians for having IQ’s “lower than the average human”, as if this was a bad thing. Actually, according to Micheal Hart, average human IQ is 88.
Thailand does have a lot of malnutrition and it is well known that this depresses IQ scores. Further, the government is actually getting serious about IQ and trying to raise national scores. I will toast to that one.
Thai and Cambodian IQ is 90, the same as Albania, Bosnia and Croatia. The Lao score is 89, the same as Turkey.
Let’s redo the IQ chart with the additions and emendations to Lynn’s dubious calculations. Note that the Lao and Khmer scores are from the ethically-challenged Professor Lynn. I searched all around for a good IQ study on the Khmer and Lao, but I could not find one. I did fight a report on mental health in Laos where a Laotian psychologist was working on preparing a version of the WISC of Lao youth.
However, the Lynn figure for Lao IQ at least represents two actual tests in Laos, one that found an IQ of 90 in village children in Laos not living in abject poverty. The second was a similar study done on their mothers that found an IQ of 88. The average, then, is 89.
IQ Hmong 82.15 World average 88? Laos 89 Cambodia 90 (est.) Thailand 90 Vietnam 99.5
As we can see from these comparisons and the fact that most SE Asian scores surpass the world average, most SE Asians surely have the brains to develop in a modern, Western-type society. Furthermore, there are large numbers of malnourished people in all those countries. It is important to be above the world average.
Although White Nationalists and some Asians rebuke groups who score at around 89-90 IQ, this blog is going to take the humanistic position that the average human is not a complete idiot. You are welcome to disagree. Therefore, this blog will never call an IQ of 88 or above a “low IQ” – an implicitly misanthropic stance.
Scoring at least at or above world average IQ ought to be sufficient to make a nation competitive economically with other nations, even if there are no other benefits. The future looks bright for SE Asians in both their lands and in the US.
Things haven’t been totally on the up and up for Asians in recent years. They have suffered serious victimization by ghetto Blacks who see them as small and weak and target them in a predatory way. The problem is particularly acute in the San Francisco Bay area.
A recent story about Asian SF parents not wanting to put their kids in schools with lots of Blacks due a huge number of comments from “liberal” San Fransiscans, including many Asians, spouting off about attacks on Asian students by Underclass Blacks. Many young Asian boys spend their early years getting beat up every day by aggressive young Black males.
The stereotype about SE Asians is that they, like NE Asians, have low testosterone. It’s not known if they do, but it seems reasonable that it’s probably pretty low. Some observers think that SE Asians may have higher testosterone than NE Asians. That lower testosterone, more introverted profile is like a red flag to a bull in terms of aggressive Black boys, who see that as weakness to be preyed on.
Furthermore, Underclass Blacks in Oakland are often openly racist towards Asians, particularly older Chinese.
SE Asians and NE Asians are stereotyped in similar ways by Whites. SE Asians have much lower college grad rate and higher unemployment rate than NE Asians, but some (Vietnamese) are doing quite well in some places.
In that same area (SF Bay Area), many Asians, especially SE Asians, are forming gangs.There are now Mien, Cambodian, Chinese, Korean and Khmu gangs in California. At one Alameda County school, Asians went from typical high-achievers to having many delinquents in just 15-20 yrs.
In Alameda County, Vietnamese (IQ 99.5), Lao (IQ 90) and Samoans (IQ 86) have considerably higher crime rates than Hispanics (IQ 89). There is a very high crime rate among Vietnamese and Lao youths in Richmond, second only to Blacks. You can see, there is no relationship between IQ and crime here.
A Second Generation theory has been proposed – the 2nd generation of immigrants has a high crime rate and rejects their parents’ values. In the US, 2/3 of Hmong and Lao, 50% of Cambodians and 1/3 of Vietnamese live in poverty. Here in California, they live in poor, heavily Black neighborhoods and have adopted the sickening and depraved gangsta culture of ghetto Blacks.
That “low-crime Asians” could have the potential for disorganized violence and crime is not surprising in light of my previous post documenting very high crime rates amongst Euro-Whites at various times in the past.
Even peaceful Taiwan has seen a sharp increase in crime in recent years. Who knows why that is occurring. Criminology is a notorious graveyard for dead theories that never pan out.
- Smith, Douglas K., Wessels, Richard A., Riebel, Emily M. August 1997. Use of the WISC-III and K-BIT with Hmong Students. School Psychology Training Program University of Wisconsin-River Falls. Paper presented at Annual Meeting of the American Psychological Association, Chicago, IL.