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The Intelligence Paradox: Why the Intelligent Choice Isn't Always the Smart One [NOOK Book]

Overview

Seventeenth-century political philosopher Thomas Hobbes once observed that intelligence must be equally distributed among humans, because no one ever complained that they didn't get as much as everyone else. Of course, that was before the invention of the IQ test prompted a series of objections that the tests were biased and/or inaccurate, that intelligence can't really be measured, and that there are multiple types of intelligence. For well over a century, intelligence and what it means have been the source of ...

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The Intelligence Paradox: Why the Intelligent Choice Isn't Always the Smart One

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Overview

Seventeenth-century political philosopher Thomas Hobbes once observed that intelligence must be equally distributed among humans, because no one ever complained that they didn't get as much as everyone else. Of course, that was before the invention of the IQ test prompted a series of objections that the tests were biased and/or inaccurate, that intelligence can't really be measured, and that there are multiple types of intelligence. For well over a century, intelligence and what it means have been the source of endless controversy. Here comes more.

In The Intelligence Paradox, the coauthor of Why Beautiful People Have More Daughters, Satoshi Kanazawa challenges the common misconceptions about what intelligence is and what it is not, how it is measured, what it's good for, and what it's bad at. He also makes many controversial statements: liberals are, on average, more intelligent than conservatives; atheists are more intelligent than believers; and homosexuals are more intelligent than heterosexuals. And using the latest research, he shows each one to be true.

At its core, Kanazawa's message is that intelligence, while certainly an asset, is one human trait among many, and it is in no way a measure of human worth. He reveals how the purposefor which general intelligence evolved solving evolutionarily novel problems that were rarely encountered during life on the savanna allows us to understand why the most intelligent people have the particular values and preferences they have. He also explains why, despite their huge brains, the most intelligent people are often less successful than their less intelligent relatives at solving life's most important problems.

Kanazawa uses the findings of several large long-term studies to examine the relationship between intelligence and numerous preferences and values. What he discovers is often surprising and sometimes, indeed, paradoxical. Intelligent men, for example, are more likely than less intelligent men to value sexual exclusivity for themselves, yet also more likely to cheat on wives or girlfriends despite what they really want. Why are intelligent people more likely than less intelligent people to be night owls and late sleepers? Precisely because it is unnatural. It may not surprise you to learn that intelligent people are more likely to prefer classical music to pop but why on earth would they also like elevator music?

Intersecting the fields of evolutionary psychology and intelligence research, The Intelligence Paradox is guaranteed to change the way you think about all that thinking you do.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781118137666
  • Publisher: Turner Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 3/28/2012
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 1,093,589
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Satoshi Kanazawa was one of the inaugural contributors to the Psychology Today blog and is Associate Editor of the Journal of Social, Evolutionary, and Cultural Psychology. He is a Reader in Management at the London School of Economics and Political Science and Honorary Research Fellow in the Department of Psychology at Birkbeck College, University of London.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xi

Introduction 1

What Do People Want? 3

A Brief Word on the Data 8

1 What Is Evolutionary Psychology? 13

Four Core Principles of Evolutionary Psychology 15

Two Logical Fallacies That We Must Avoid 19

2 The Nature and Limitations of the Human Brain 23

The Savanna Principle 23

3 What Is Intelligence? 37

Common Misconceptions about Intelligence 38

How Did General Intelligence Evolve? 49

Cognitive Classes 54

4 When Intelligence Matters (and When It Doesn’t) 55

The Savanna-IQ Interaction Hypothesis 55

From the Hypothesis to the Paradox: The Intelligence Paradox on Individual

Preferences and Values 71

5 Why Liberals Are More Intelligent than Conservatives 73

What Is Liberalism? 73

Are Liberals More Intelligent than Conservatives? 76

If Liberals Are More Intelligent than Conservatives, Why Are Liberals So Stupid? 78

IQ and the Values of Nations 84

6 Why Atheists Are More Intelligent than the Religious 87

Where Does Religion Come From? 87

Is It Natural to Believe in God? 92

Societal Implications 95

7 Why More Intelligent Men (but Not More Intelligent Women) Value Sexual Exclusivity 97

Humans Are Naturally Polygynous, Not Monogamous 97

Are More Intelligent Men More Likely to Be Faithful? 101

Intelligence and Marriage Institutions 110

8 Why Night Owls Are More Intelligent than Morning Larks 113

Choice within Genetic Predisposition 114

Night Life Is Evolutionarily Novel 115

So Are Asians Really More Nocturnal than Others? 122

9 Why Homosexuals Are More Intelligent than Heterosexuals 127

What Does It Mean to Be Homosexual? 128

Evolutionary Novelty of Homosexual Identity and Behavior 130

Intelligence and Homosexuality 133

10 Why More Intelligent People Like Classical Music 141

Evolutionary Origins of Music 144

Intelligence and Tastes for Music 148

Evolutionary Novelty or Cognitive Complexity? 152

11 Why Intelligent People Drink and Smoke More 157

Brief Histories of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Drugs 158

Intelligence and Substance Use 160

Intelligence and Criminality 173

12 Why Intelligent People Are the Ultimate Losers in Life 177

Reproduction Is the Ultimate Goal of All Living Organisms 177

Intelligence and the Value for Children 178

Intelligence and the Number of Children 181

Heritability of Fertility: An Evolutionary Puzzle 186

Possible Societal Consequences 187

13 Other Possible Consequences of Intelligence 191

Coffee 192

Vegetarianism 192

Crime and Punishment 198

Representative Democracy 199

Conclusion: Intelligent People Are Not What You Think 205

Notes 209

References 221

Index 243

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