June 8, 2011

hbd chick v. Francis Fukuyama

hbd chick has made an interesting response to my review in The American Conservative of Francis Fukuyama's The Origins of Political Order. First, another excerpt from my review:
William D. Hamilton’s math was popularized by Edward O. Wilson’s 1975 bombshell Sociobiology and by Richard Dawkins’s 1976 bestseller The Selfish Gene. (A more accurate title would have been The Dynastic Gene.) According to Fukuyama, however, political science has scandalously ignored the implications of these famous books. That’s true in general, although I have on my bookshelves academic works pointing out the fascinating political implications of kin selection by Pierre L. van den Berghe, Frank Salter, Tatu Vanhanen, and J.P. Rushton, none of whom Fukuyama cites. 
... Fukuyama is worried enough by this unpublicized but powerful line of logic that he tries to brush off the entire concept of ethnic nepotism: 
"Since virtually all human societies organized themselves tribally at one point, many people are tempted to believe that this is somehow a natural state of affairs or biologically driven. It is not obvious, however, why you should want to cooperate with a cousin four times removed rather than a familiar nonrelative just because you share one sixty-fourth of your genes with your cousin."
Indeed, it is “not obvious,” but Fukuyama’s challenge is hardly unanswerable. In arranged-marriage cultures, clans, tribes, and castes can perpetuate themselves indefinitely, making states typically either ineffective or tyrannical. For example, as I’m writing, Colonel Gaddafi has so far survived NATO aerial bombardment by rallying many Bedouin tribes to his banner. Even though most Libyan nomads have settled down, they’ve maintained tribalism as what anthropologist Stanley Kurtz calls their “social structure in reserve” precisely for violent times like these when you can only trust blood relations. 
In the West, in contrast, over the generations familiar nonrelatives—i.e., neighbors—tend to turn into relatives, or at least potential in-laws, because European cultures frequently permitted love marriages with the girl next door. Moreover, as Fukuyama notes, the Catholic Church discouraged even fourth-cousin marriages. The resulting broad but shallow regional blood ties help explain why Western cultures were able to organize politically on a territorial basis without always being looted by self-interested clans.

hbd chick expands my rebuttal to Fukuyama into a General Theory of the West:
No, being tribal is not necessarily the natural state of affairs, but it IS biologically driven. as is being non-tribal. 
Europeans used to be tribal, but that's because they used to marry their cousins, too, just like the afghanis or iraqis or saudis or libyans of today. the church put an end to all that and then some -- it also put an end to all sorts of endogamous practices like polygamy and marrying your dead brother's wife. first- and second-cousin marriage was banned in 506 a.d., and by the 11th century the church had banned marriage up to SIXTH cousins. 
This forced exogamy resulted in, as steve describes it, "broad but shallow regional blood ties." almost all of european (and western) history hinges on these loose genetic ties. the whole evolution of european societies from tribes to city-states (think of the venices and the hamburgs of europe) to the nationalistic movements -- this was made possible because extended family ties were continually loosened over centuries of european history (from the fall of rome onwards). the broadening of political structures (tribe, city-state, national-state) mirrors the underlying broadening of the genetic ties.

80 comments:

Shawn said...

Girl HBD bloggers exist? Awesome!

Anonymous said...

"Moreover, as Fukuyama notes, the Catholic Church discouraged even fourth-cousin marriages."

But there was a lot of inbreeding among the elites, which is why the Spanish and Russian royalty became so retarded. in fact, most kings, queens, and princes tended to be idiots, fools, weaklings, dummies, or weirdos, like Ludwig II of Bavaria.

Besides, let's not confuse tribalism with clannism, which is more bound by blood. A tribe is more a community united by shared culture than by direct kinship.

Anonymous said...

"No, being tribal is not necessarily the natural state of affairs, but it IS biologically driven. as is being non-tribal. Europeans used to be tribal, but that's because they used to marry their cousins, too, just like the afghanis or iraqis or saudis or libyans of today. the church put an end to all that and then some -- it also put an end to all sorts of endogamous practices like polygamy and marrying your dead brother's wife."

Well... Christian morality seems to have loosened considerably and everyone is screwing everyone. And we have defacto polygamous arrangements in the black community where one guys has kids with lots of women. But I don't see a renewal in tribalism or kinism. I suppose street gang thuggery is a form of tribalism, but its ties and loyalties aren't really bound by anything.

OneSTDV said...

Girl HBD bloggers exist? Awesome!

"Bloggers"?? I think she's the only one.

But yes, look at how diverse we are!!

Henry Canaday said...

Fukuyama spoke at our Local Lefty Bookstore about six weeks ago. He summarized his argument that modern liberal democracy required:

1) A centralized and competent state bureaucracy, which China achieved first;

2) This central state being subject to a rule of moral law, which usually comes from a transcendent religion, which China did not have;

3) The breakup of intense clan loyalties, achieved by the Catholic Church in Europe;

4) The survival of representative or parliamentary institutions, which happened, perhaps accidentally, in England.

It all sounded like "The End Of History. . .," after a heavy edit by George Will. That is progress, of course. But the book mentions biological evolution only as a metaphor for Fukuyama’s theory of political evolution. After the work of Cochran, Harpending, Clark, Murray and others, it all seems rather dated.

None of the LLB audience members asked any inconvenient questions about what role biological evolution might have played in making the modern world possible.

Anonymous said...

Biology is both powerful and weak. It's powerful as fuel for feeling, but emotions can be controlled or suppressed by the mind, which is controlled by values, morality, spirituality. Animals don't have a mind big enough to control their urges, but humans do. So, humans live in a state of biology and ideology, or biodeology; and in a state of biology and morality, or biorality. Because of the nature of his mind, a human cannot be purely biological nor can he be purely ideological.

So, what we call tribalism is both biological and ideological. It is an expression of our natural urges but also functions with the cultural norms, customs, patterns of any given society. So, there could be five different tribes with five different tribalisms.

Now, what if a society seeks to suppress the biological side of tribalism or tribalism altogether? Is it possible? It would be like someone repressing his sexual energy, almost to the point of pretending that he doesn't feel it anymore. But of course, this is not possible--unless all the hormones are sucked out of his body.
If a person suppresses his sexual urges, the sexual urge must find some kind of outlet. Paradoxically, repressed sexuality may manifest itself as anti-sexual morality. A sexually frustrated person may find a kind of perverse sexual pleasure by denouncing sexuality as sinful. The persecution of sexuality could take on the hysteria of sexuality. This is why sexual puritans among both Muslims and Christians are, in some ways, the most sexual people. Their anti-sexualism is a kind of orgasmic hysteria. If sex makes people feel good but if that sense of goodness is repressed and denied, something has to take its place to provide a sense of goodness, and it is often morality.

Though we generally define morality in opposition to sensuality, morality can be charged with a righteous sensuality all its own. Just look at Christine O'Donnell masturbating in her own virtue. So, even though anti-sexualism is anti-biological on the surface, it cannot vanquish sexual energies, which are channeled into moral hysteria and orgasmic puritanism.

Same may apply to tribalism. It's a no-no in the modern West, but tribalism is something that naturally makes people feel good, secure, part of a community, connected, etc.
But if people are told it is evil and sinful, it becomes repressed. But more you repress something, the more powerful it becomes. Since the energy cannot express itself as tribalism, it is moralized into hysterical anti-tribalism. When I see white liberals throwing hysterical tantrums about 'racism', they sound like Victorian women having hissy fits about sexual matters. Though the likes of Lawrence O'Donnell and Keith Olbermann denounce 'white racists', they seem so wildly charged and energized cuz their own naturally 'racist' and tribal urges are being repressed. There's a look of desperation in their eyes, as if unless this hysteria was maintained, they too might come to realize that, my oh my, they feel the same 'racist' urges as other people do.

Anonymous said...

So, it could be through biorality(or morology)that our natural urges and feelings are repressed and re-formed(and reformed, as well as deformed)into morality.

But since calm morality isn't sufficient enough to control powerful biological urges, morality itself must become aggressive and growl with tooth-and-claw ferocity(as Lawrence O'Donnell does all the time)to both repress the biological energy and to express it in an altered form.

It's not easy to calmly repress sexuality. It has to be repressed sexualistically, which is to say the anti-sexual morality must be as hysterical, wild, and orgasmic as sexuality itself.

This explain the wild sadism involved in punishing witches who allegedly had sex with the devil.
Or consider the scene in ZORBA THE GREEK where all those sexually repressed men kill Irene Pappas in a way that has the feel of rape. They're punising her for being a whore, but their moral violence is really a subsumed rape fantasy.

This could explain the mad hysteria behind PC. Something so unnatural can only succeed by a form of puritanical hysteria. It appropriates the energy of tribalism(even while or especially because of denouncing it) and moralizes it into righteousness. And since PC puritans themselves feel, deep in their hearts, that they're going against nature, they become more hysterical in their self-repression and persecution of heresy.
So, even anti-tribalism is fueled by the core energy of tribalism. Morality is a useful tool for taking a powerful biological urge and then redressing/reprogamming it to repress itself. Shamefulness is the flipside of shamelessness, as when Adam and Eve went from being totally shameless in their nudity(biology) to being totally shameful(morality). But since the emotions within morality are fueled by biology, man lives in a state of biorality. Paradoxically, even anti-tribal idealism requires the biological energy of tribalism, just as the sexual puritanism needs to be fueled by sexual energy.

Anonymous said...

"It all sounded like "The End Of History. . .," after a heavy edit by George Will."

Or, BLEND OF HISTORY.

Anonymous said...

Or a HASH OR MASH OF CIVILIZATIONS.

Anonymous said...

""Bloggers"?? I think she's the only one."

Naww, you're the only ONE.

Sofiastry (young, from India, talks about sex a lot)

Latte Island ("appears to be a racist Jewish woman" - praise from Mencius Moldbug who thinks she is the bee's knees)

maybe Zilla of the Resistance (strongly anti-Muslim)?
maybe Modernity Sucks (chats with Sofiastry a lot)
Those are all I can think of for now.

Crawfurdmuir said...

I find the claim that "the Catholic Church discouraged even fourth-cousin marriages" to be far-fetched, and I would like to know on what authority Fukuyama says this. Fukuyama appears to be confusing the fourth degree of kinship with that of a fourth cousin.

Your first cousin is related to you in the fourth degree, as is your great aunt or uncle. The degree of kinship you have with a collateral relative is determined by counting back from yourself to your common ancestor, and forward through his ancestors to him.

Accordingly, in the case of a first cousin, you share a grandparent. Starting with yourself, count 1 back to your parent, 2 back to your common grandparent, 3 forward to your parent's sibling (your aunt or uncle), and 4 to your first cousin - the fourth degree of kinship.

A table of degrees of kinship may be found at:

http://www.mystatewill.com/degrees_of_kinship.htm

Your fourth cousin is one who shares with you a common great-great-great-grandparent. This is so distant a relationship as not to be listed on the linked table, but if it were, fourth cousins would be in the tenth degree.

First-cousin marriages are prohibited by canon law and, in some jurisdictions, by civil law. Canonical dispensations for the marriage of first cousins were and perhaps still are routinely granted, and in many jurisdictions there is no civil prohibition.

The contention that marriages to fourth cousins - i.e., to persons in the tenth degree of kinship - were forbidden by the mediæval Catholic church can easily be refuted by reference to birth brieves recorded at the Court of the Lord Lyon in Edinburgh and the College of Arms in London, or to works documenting genealogies of ancient families, e.g., Debrett or Burke's.

Anonymous said...

"But there was a lot of inbreeding among the elites, which is why the Spanish and Russian royalty became so retarded. in fact, most kings, queens, and princes tended to be idiots, fools, weaklings, dummies, or weirdos, like Ludwig II of Bavaria."

Without the time or space to offer a detailed rebuttal, I think you will find that the 'inbred moron' view of European royalty is in large part a self-serving myth nicely fitting the progressive, Bolshevik, democratic narrative often confused with History.
Gilbert Pinfold.

PR Intern said...

Shawn said...

Girl HBD bloggers exist? Awesome!

This will turn out like the Libertarian Girl blog, i.e. we'll find out that it was a middle-aged guy all along.

glib, facile n snarky said...

"This forced exogamy resulted in, as steve describes it, "broad but shallow regional blood ties." almost all of european (and western) history hinges on these loose genetic ties. the whole evolution of european societies from tribes to city-states (think of the venices and the hamburgs of europe) to the nationalistic movements -- "

And now Catholics should continue the process of world domination by marrying non Europeans. I hadn't recognized the strategy before. But it all makes sense now considering Catholics show no interest whatsoever in converting Europeans who aren't already Catholic.

hbd chick said...

@anonymous @6/8/11 2:51 PM - "But there was a lot of inbreeding among the elites...."

yes, there was (is?). there has also been, down through the centuries, plenty of "dispensations" handed out so that you could marry your cousin if you really wanted to. they tended to happen, afaics, more in certain regions of europe than others. can you guess which regions (i.e. where there's been more inbreeding leading to greater clannish-ness)?

@anonymous - "A tribe is more a community united by shared culture than by direct kinship."

socio-anthropological nonsense, sorry to say. tribes are primarily based upon kinship -- groups of related clans joined together. in some places at some times, unrelated clans or groups might united forces to become a tribe, but for the most part it is lineage-based.

just ask qathaf'y. he oughta know! (~_^)

hbd chick said...

@anonymous 6/8/11 2:55 PM - "And we have defacto polygamous arrangements in the black community where one guys has kids with lots of women. But I don't see a renewal in tribalism or kinism."

you gotta remember, tho, that african-americans are a kinda special case. their kinship relations were all jumbled up when they were brought from africa to here. overall, they can't be a very inbred group (yet), despite all the de facto polygamy.

hbd chick said...

@the one - "But yes, look at how diverse we are!!"

surely you mean "biodiverse." (~_^)

MQ said...

This urge to try to take what is clearly cultural and boil it down to some kind of crude biological determinism is just plain silliness.

hbd chick said...

"hbd chick v. Francis Fukuyama"

a finger-wrestling duel! i could totally take him! (fingers are toned 'cause i type all my own stuff -- no dictation for me!) (~_^)

Julian O'Dea said...

Steve

Have you looked at Fukuyama's book "Trust"? It covers similar ground to Frank Salter, if I recall. I remember being amazed that Fukuyama did not cite Salter. I was genuinely disappointed, because they seemed to be plowing the same ground.

Anonymous said...

There are regional differences here, most importantly between southern and northern Europe.

Also it's too simplistic to portray the nation-state and nationalism as a broadening of ties. It can be seen as a reassertion of blood ties against universalizing structures after Northern Europeans were freed from Roman domination.

hbd chick said...

@pr intern - "This will turn out like the Libertarian Girl blog, i.e. we'll find out that it was a middle-aged guy all along."

heh. i assure you, i'm a chick. but, obviously, that's kinda hard to prove online. there shoulda been some sort of is-it-a-chick innerwebs turing test.... (~_^)

minarchy has posted some hbd-related stuff, but she's on sabbatical right now. (or at least she was last time i checked.)

Wandrin said...

MQ,

"This urge to try to take what is clearly cultural and boil it down to some kind of crude biological determinism is just plain silliness."

Add time.

Was it clearly cultural at the beginning with small family groups of hunter gatherers or was it mostly crude biological determinism with a little bit of cultural?

Over time yes, the balance between biological and cultural influences shifts but there will have been a process of transition from one to the other.

hbd chick said...

@crawfurdmuir - "I find the claim that 'the Catholic Church discouraged even fourth-cousin marriages' to be far-fetched...."

no, they really did. as far out as sixth cousins at some points in time! must've been a pain to try and find someone you could marry:

"In Roman Catholicism, all marriages more distant than first-cousin marriages are allowed, and first-cousin marriages can be contracted with a dispensation. This was not always the case, however: the Catholic Church has gone through several phases in kinship prohibitions. At the dawn of Christianity in Roman times, marriages between first cousins were allowed. For example, Emperor Constantine, the first Christian Roman Emperor, married his children to the children of his half-brother. First and second cousin marriages were then banned at the Council of Agde in AD 506, though dispensations sometimes continued to be granted. By the 11th century, with the adoption of the so-called canon-law method of computing consanguinity, these proscriptions had been extended even to sixth cousins, including by marriage. But due to the many resulting difficulties in reckoning who was related who, they were relaxed back to third cousins at the Fourth Lateran Council in AD 1215. Pope Benedict XV reduced this to second cousins in 1917, and finally, the current law was enacted in 1983."

hbd chick said...

@anonymous - 6/8/11 6:57 PM - "Also it's too simplistic to portray the nation-state and nationalism as a broadening of ties. It can be seen as a reassertion of blood ties against universalizing structures after Northern Europeans were freed from Roman domination."

i was referring to the romantic nationalistic movements of the 18th century onwards. that's a looooong time to wait to reassert your blood ties after the fall of rome. (~_^)

corvinus said...

The contention that marriages to fourth cousins - i.e., to persons in the tenth degree of kinship - were forbidden by the mediæval Catholic church can easily be refuted by reference to birth brieves recorded at the Court of the Lord Lyon in Edinburgh and the College of Arms in London, or to works documenting genealogies of ancient families, e.g., Debrett or Burke's.

You're right there, actually. The Catholic Church never had any restriction on fourth-cousin marriages. Apparently, the Church's scientists had determined that it was third cousins and closer where the problems of consanguinity started. The Church required dispensations for third-cousin marriages, but granted them readily. Second cousin dispensations were more difficult, and those for first cousins almost impossible.

Oddly enough, there was some study that came out recently which indicated that fourth- and fifth- cousin mating was actually optimal, and that greater or less relation (race-mixing enthusiasts take note!) was progressively more deleterious! Of course, in modern Western society, nobody knows who their fourth and fifth cousins even are. But, it may be a suggestion that the Arabs and Pakistanis might be amenable to listening to. Perhaps.

hbd chick said...

@anonymous - 6/8/11 3:37 PM - "...emotions can be controlled or suppressed by the mind, which is controlled by values, morality, spirituality."

the mind is a product of the brain (and body). values, morality, and feelings of spirituality -- all (mostly) products of our biology, my friend.

hbd chick said...

@mq - "This urge to try to take what is clearly cultural and boil it down to some kind of crude biological determinism is just plain silliness."

where does culture come from, then?

Anonymous said...

i was referring to the romantic nationalistic movements of the 18th century onwards. that's a looooong time to wait to reassert your blood ties after the fall of rome. (~_^)

By "Roman domination" I meant the Catholic Church.

Anonymous said...

"Also it's too simplistic to portray the nation-state and nationalism as a broadening of ties. It can be seen as a reassertion of blood ties against universalizing structures after Northern Europeans were freed from Roman domination."

One way of looking at this is to see ethno-centrism operating at two conflicting levels - a strong force at the extended family or clan level and a weaker force at the more loosely related tribal level.

The clan force operates against tribal co-operation and the tribal force operates in favor of it. The default mode is against co-operation because the clan force is stronger. The exception to this is times of war where the impetus to co-operate overcomes the clannish resistance.

If the clan-level force is weakened it makes it easier for tribal co-operation to become the default mode. It's not a weakening of blood-ties it's a shift in the balance between near-kin and far-kin.

socko said...

"which is why the Spanish and Russian royalty became so retarded. in fact, most kings, queens, and princes tended to be idiots, fools, weaklings, dummies, or weirdos, like Ludwig II of Bavaria."

ridiculous repetition of agitprop.

hbd chick said...

@anonymous @6/8/11 7:56 PM - "By 'Roman domination' I meant the Catholic Church."

oh, THAT roman domination. heh. well, it's still a pretty long time from the 1400-1500s (protestant reformation) to the heydays romantic nationalism. why'd it take so long for those nationalistic sentiments to re-arise?

hbd chick said...

@anonymous @6/8/11 8:06 PM "...a strong force at the extended family or clan level and a weaker force at the more loosely related tribal level.... If the clan-level force is weakened it makes it easier for tribal co-operation to become the default mode. It's not a weakening of blood-ties it's a shift in the balance between near-kin and far-kin."

interesting way of looking at it.

but, what is this "force"? (it wouldn't be this, by any chance, would it?)

Rasselas said...

Darwin and J.S. Bach and Queen Victoria all married first cousins by whom they had lots of children. Royalty lived by the rule we find satirized in The Princess and the Pea: a prince had to marry a real princess. The lower orders, meanwhile, looking for compatible partners within courting distance (on foot or horseback, remember), must often have settled for cousins. Surely there are social historians who can tell us how often it actually happened, and who don't accept as uncritically as Fukuyama does the notion that the Church successfully discouraged even fourth-cousin marriages.

Dispensations are the key to the Church's position. When a dispensation was necessary, somebody in the clergy usually received extra money. I am reminded of what Evelyn Waugh noted in Scoop:

The better sort ... have been Christian for many centuries and will not publicly eat human flesh, uncooked, in Lent, without special and costly dispensation from their bishop.

Crawfurdmuir said...

@hbd chick - The period between the 11th century and the Fourth Lateran Council in 1215 was relatively brief. Further, it must always be borne in mind that before the First Vatican Council of 1870, papal bulls and decretals often had no force outside of the Papal States, because under various concordats and constitutions outside the Pope's temporal authority, they might or might not be published at the discretion of the temporal ruler. If not published, they were not enforceable either civilly or canonically.

Indeed, marriage customs often differed widely in those realms from the forms canonically prescribed. Handfasting, for example, had legal status in mediaeval Scotland, and noble feus might descend through ecclesiastically unrecognised liaisons, e.g., as the lordship of the Garioch did through an ecclesiastically illegitimate daughter of William the Lion. In England, the legal commentator Bracton (fl. 13th c.) recognised the status of 'concubina legitima'. On the other hand, even though a marriage of a noble and an ignoble person were solemnised by the church, it might not confer rights of inheritance upon the children under temporal law or the private law of a great noble or princely house. Morganatic marriages between royal and non-royal personages were contracted on such a basis as recently the last century.

I have done a great deal of my own family's genealogy through the middle ages back to the time of Charlemagne. There were not enough people in Europe during those centuries for all marriages to have been exogamous to the standard indicated - especially in the British isles. Charlemagne shows up in my ahnentafel repeatedly. His descendants at the tenth degree (and lesser degrees) of kinship intermarried with great frequency and fecundity. History shows that this had very little effect on the vigor and intelligence of the line, as Pinfold and Socko have pointed out. Claims to the contrary are indeed agitprop.

Almost everyone of northwestern European descent is descended from Charlemagne in one line or another, and just about everyone having Anglo-Norman ancestry is a descendant of Edward III. The table of kindred and affinity provided in the 1662 Book of Common Prayer, as still used in the Church of England, reflects what was actual English practice going back to a time long before the Reformation.

hbd chick said...

@crawfurdmuir - "There were not enough people in Europe during those centuries for all marriages to have been exogamous to the standard indicated...."

no, indeed. of course the church's laws weren't always enforceable everywhere at all times. kinda like cheatin' on taxes today. there are tax laws, but LOTS o' people bend 'em and not everyone gets caught. also, obviously, dispensations were (and still are) given out.

the point is, though, that the church (and many protestant churches as well) strongly pushed europeans towards more exogamous mating patterns, to the point where today we marry any old body whose familiy we often don't even know. once-upon-a-time in europe it was quite different. and in many parts of the world today, it remains "different" like that.

Forty Percent said...

“Catholic Church discouraged even fourth-cousin marriages. The resulting broad but shallow regional blood ties help explain why Western cultures were able to organize politically on a territorial basis without always being looted by self-interested clans.”

“Europeans used to be tribal, but that's because they used to marry their cousins, too, just like the afghanis or iraqis or saudis or libyans of today.”

Not all tribal / clannish cultures practice cousin marriage. For example, Circassians absolutely forbid cousin marriage. The Chechens don’t seem to practice it either.

It’s not clear that cousin marriage was widespread in Europe before the Catholic prohibition.

Wiki- “First-cousin marriage was legal in ancient Rome … However whether the incidence of such marriages was low or high has been debated. [D]ata from tombstones further indicates that in most of the western empire parallel-cousin marriages were also not widely practiced among commoners.”

Scandinavian nations, with the shortest history of Catholicism, have even smaller rates of cousin marriage then very Catholic ones like Italy and Spain.

In places where consanguity rates are very high, Morrocco to Pakistan, it’s one of the factors preventing the rise of functioning European style nation states.

But it probably wasn’t all that important in the last say ~3,000 years of European history. Or for that matter in the history of China, Japan, Sub-Saharan Africa.

Protestants did away with the Catholic prohibition and it didn’t retard the rise of nation states in Northern Europe. And the Catholic church followed suit.

Charles Darwin and Queen Victoria married first cousins. Wiki - England maintained a small but stable proportion of cousin marriages for centuries, with proportions in 1875 estimated by George Darwin at 3.5 percent for the middle classes and 4.5 percent for the nobility, though this has declined to under 1 percent in the 20th century. When a question about cousin marriage was eventually considered in 1871 for the census, according to George Darwin it was rejected "amid the scornful laughter of the House, on the grounds that the idle curiosity of philosophers was not to be satisfied."

As for worldwide variation in cousin marriage.

http://www.consang.net/images/d/dd/01AHBWeb3.pdf

“There appears to be no particular rationale for the subdivision of human populations into opposing forms of marriage preference, and even within the major religions there are quite marked differences in attitude to close kin marriage. Thus in Christianity, the Orthodox churches prohibit consanguineous marriage, the Roman Catholic church currently requires Diocesan permission for marriages between first cousins, and the Protestant denominations permit marriages up to and including first cousin unions (Bittles et al. 2001).

A similar degree of non-uniformity exists in Hinduism. The Aryan Hindus of northern India prohibit marriage between biological kin for approximately seven generations on the male side and five generations on the female side (Kapadia 1958). By comparison, Dravidian Hindus of South India strongly favour marriage between first cousins.”
--
In Ethiopia the ruling Christian Amhara people were historically rigidly opposed to cousin marriage… with marriage at least ostensibly prohibited out to sixth cousins.

Fourty Percent said...

“I was referring to the romantic nationalistic movements of the 18th century onwards.”

So what do the Romantic nationalist movements have to do with cousin marriage.

How many people were marrying their cousins 3,000 years before the Romantic Movement?

Crawfurdmuir said...

@hbd chick - no, NOT like cheating on taxes. The Pope was not considered infallible, even when speaking ex cathedra, prior to Vatican I; what was lawful both canonically and civilly in realms outside the papal states depended upon the applicable ecclesiastical constitutions (e.g., Henry I's Constitutions of Clarendon) and concordats. These typically placed the right of appointment to bishoprics in the hands of the temporal monarch (just as the right of presentation of a cleric to the local church was typically in the hands of the lord of the manor) and reserved the right of publication or promulgation of papal
bulls to him. If not promulgated by the temporal sovereign,
a Papal bull or decretal had no legal force within his land's
boundaries. Essentially the church in most mediaeval
kingdoms was subject to the state. Indeed, in some cases,
they might be united in an hereditary prince-bishopric,
passing not from father to son, but from uncle to nephew.

The mediaeval church was much less centralized than it became after the Council of Trent. Indeed, the conflict of
Guelph and Ghibelline can be summarized as one between
the Pope's claimed authority and that of the Holy Roman Emperor. The long list of antipopes from the eleventh through the fifteenth centuries shows how effectively papal authority was disputed during the very period Fukuyama asserts that the church prohibited fourth cousins from marrying. Its writ in fact ran no further than the temporal demesnes of the papacy. Customary secular law governed outside them with respect to property, marriage, and inheritance, as demonstrated by extensive genealogical records.

Anonymous said...

"what is this "force"? (it wouldn't be this, by any chance, would it?)"

Yes, if you take Hamilton's Rule (rB > C) but imagine a situation where an individual has a choice of altruistic acts, one at the clan level and one at the tribe level then the greater degree of relatedness (r) at the clan level means that even if both choices meet the condition of being > C it still makes sense for the individual to pick the clan level choice because the benefit will be greater.

This could be outweighed if the altruistic act at the tribal level had a larger value of additional reproductive benefit (B).

If the degree of relatedness (r) at the clan level was 10 and at the tribe level 4 then the additional reproductive benefit for performing the altruistic act at the tribal level would have to be 2.5 times greater to match the benefit of performing the act at the clan level.

If the degrees of relatedness were instead 8 and 6 then the value for B at the tribal level would only have to be 4/3 bigger than the value of B at the clan level. The smaller the gap between degree of relatedness between near-kin and far-kin the smaller the gap between additional reproductive benefit needs to be before tribal level co-operation makes sense.

If you take B as a proxy for economies of scale then early historical examples where greater tribal level B might be large enough to outweigh greater clan level r would be things like war, natural defenses (forts) and supernatural defenses (temples) as each of these has economies of scale - each clan could build their own little fort compound or they could combine their efforts to build one large hill-fort for the whole tribe. The less clannish a population the more likely they'll have a shared hill-fort. The more clannish a population the more likely they'll only have their own fortified compound.

Anonymous said...

I am afraid HBD chick has got it wrong.
All European states were (and still are), defined by language.
Language is the proxy of shared blood and shared 'genetic feeling', that gives the idea to the individual that they are part of a bigger tribe when defined against an external enemy.Traditionally, no European state possesed any 'visible minorities' such as the USA has always done, if you don't count Jews or Roma for example.
Germans of widely different racial type (ie Nordics from the Baltic coast, Alpines from Bavaria)identified as 'Germans' on the basis of language.The English tried their damndest to eliminate the Irish, Welsh and Scottish languages for the same reason (the Irish self identified by religion as another proxy).
Of course, the concepts of monarchy and kingdom of subject people is also important.It is interesting to note that the word 'king' derives from the word 'kin'.

londoner said...

I've heard that the average white English person with at least two grandparents born in England (or something like that - can't remember the exact criterion) is on average seventh cousins with every other person who meets the same conditions. if this, or somethng like this, is true, then even adjusting for far lower population mobility in the middle ages it makes me question how anyone could have had a good enough grasp of who were fifth/sixth cousins to stop them marrying each other.

Tangentially, the near-complete breakdown of traditional family structures in parts of urban Britain, and serial impregnators burning through armies of welfare-supported young "single mothers" is likely to lead to a huge rise in accidental consanguinity over the coming generations, with lots of youngsters who unknowingly share a daddy producing offspring of their own. And it's hard to see how the effect can do anything but spiral out of control as time passes.

Forty Percent said...

“the whole evolution of european societies from tribes to city-states (think of the venices and the hamburgs of europe) to the nationalistic movements -- this was made possible because extended family ties were continually loosened over centuries of european history (from the fall of rome onwards). the broadening of political structures (tribe, city-state, national-state) mirrors the underlying broadening of the genetic ties.”

No, over the long term city states just weren’t as good at large scale violence as larger entities. See Spanish Fury. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fall_of_Antwerp

Anyways, the whole point of a place like Venice or Amsterdam is to develop/maintain business ties with people very far away, who are less related to you than the farmer 20 miles out of town. They're cosmopolitan.

lesley said...

"Girl HBD bloggers exist? Awesome!

"Bloggers"?? I think she's the only one.

But yes, look at how diverse we are!!"

There are others. One good one is Matilda's anthropology blog,http://mathildasanthropologyblog.wordpress.com/
Like another non-pc woman, Dr. Mary Lefkowitz, Matilda has spent some controversial moments debunking Afro-centrists on the subject of ancient Egypt. She's had to be circumspect about her identity (she's British I think) because of threats from disgruntled Afro-centrists. She hasn't posted in a year.

hapsburg poster child said...

Without the time or space to offer "a detailed rebuttal, I think you will find that the 'inbred moron' view of European royalty is in large part a self-serving myth nicely fitting the progressive, Bolshevik, democratic narrative often confused with History.
Gilbert Pinfold."

I agree. There were many highly intelligent members of various royal families, and the Bachs and Darwins married cousins for generations and seem to have done ok, although statistically if everyone had done that it would hve been bad news.

However, there were a number of duds among the Hapsburgs, one being Charles II, 1661-1700. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_II_of_Spain. He had the Hapsburg lip and long jaw, but to an extreme degree, could hardly speak, was crippled, and appears to have been somewhat retarded. He'd be a poster boy for the deleterious effects of monarchial incest. His parents were uncle and niece which married combo is rare and creepy even in cousin-marrying cultures. The royals considered themselves above the usual laws, partly because their marriages were usually for political reasons.

Douglas Knight said...

For anyone who is, like me, suspicious of that wikipedia quote, here is the text of the Fourth Lateran council of 1215. Item 50 bans 3rd cousin marriage. Item 51 indicates that this reduced the prohibition by 3 (canon) degrees, so 6th cousins really were banned before.

Hapsburg poster-child said...

While plenty of royals of cousin-marriage extraction were quite attractive and intelligent, there was at least one poster-boy, Charles II of Spain, 1661-1700, against the practice. He had the long jaw and lip of the Hapsburgs, to an extreme, could scarcely talk, was crippled, and mildly retarded. His parents were uncle and niece, which combo was rare and creepy even in cousin-marrying cultures (although in the play, Richard III, Richard did suggest to his widowed sister-in-law that he marry her daughter, his niece (just after he had murdered his two nephews according to the play.)
So if you study the Hapsburg line, you do find some duds whose problems could be traced as too much Hapsburg.

Anonymous said...

@anonymous - "A tribe is more a community united by shared culture than by direct kinship."

"socio-anthropological nonsense, sorry to say. tribes are primarily based upon kinship -- groups of related clans joined together. in some places at some times, unrelated clans or groups might united forces to become a tribe, but for the most part it is lineage-based."

I said 'direct kinship'. There are many tribes in Africa numbering 1000s, 10,000s, or even 100,000s of people. When two people of same tribe meet, they might not be able to identify the other person as my-this-or-that-relation, but based on dress, manners, language, etc, he may feel the other guy is part of the same tribe.
In a tribe of 10,000s people, you simply cannot know everyone or locate his kinship identity in relation to you exactly. Two guys may be related but that's not how one immediatley recognizes the other as a tribal member. It is through cultural signs: you wear feathers, he wears same kind of feathers. Now, once you sit down and get to talking, you might realize he's related to you in such-and-such way. But immediate recognition of same-tribeness often depends on shared cultural signs.

But in a clannist order, you might recongize every member of the clan as this-or-that relation.

Anonymous said...

"Without the time or space to offer a detailed rebuttal, I think you will find that the 'inbred moron' view of European royalty is in large part a self-serving myth nicely fitting the progressive, Bolshevik, democratic narrative often confused with History."

Then how come the King of England and Tsar Nicholas looked so much alike? And why were so many kings and emperors simpering wimpering morons?

Anonymous said...

Though the Left claims to be anti-blood-tribalist, the fact that they promote interracism means that they do believe that blood-tribalism is a powerful/permanent force of human nature.
Blood-tribalism could mean being related by family connections(kinship)or being of the same race/ethnicity.
If ideology were enough, there would no great need to promote interracism. After all, white people, black people, brown people, yellow people, etc could all be taught 'we are all part of the human race' and live together as one. But this is often not the case. Races still remain apart socially even if they share the same official ideology. So, the only permanent way to create 'one human race' is to promote an interracist mixed-blood-tribalism. If all the bloods are mixed, everyone belongs to the mixed-blood-tribe, like so many in Brazil.

So, the contradiction of interracism is that it's officially anti-tribalist but adheres to the tribalist emphasis on blood by trying to create a new kind of mixed-blood at the core of the new super-tribe called the 'human race'.

Leftists look at Soviet Communism and believe it failed cuz it didn't sufficiently mix the blood of all the peoples. Instead, most ethnicities remained separate and were united only by ideology. Ideology weakend and the communist empire cracked apart.
The Left now believes that ideology need to be grounded in biology.
Of course, it's not so easy. If tribalism is natural, many people will naturally resist interracism. But once it happens, the mixed-race people will be part of new expanding blood-tribe. Even giants started small.

A white leftist might switch his ideology and become a white right. But a mixed-race person who's half-white/half-black can never turn to the white right. His mixed-blood is his ideology. So, the new Left is for biodeology. Ironically, this is made possible not by communism but by globalist capitalism which breaks down all barriers, promotes massive immigration, and spreads pop culture which makes women go pant-pant for big black guys.

Anonymous said...

oh, THAT roman domination. heh. well, it's still a pretty long time from the 1400-1500s (protestant reformation) to the heydays romantic nationalism. why'd it take so long for those nationalistic sentiments to re-arise?

Oh, I don't know. Just years of war, massacres, violence, struggle, political contest, etc. Also the persistence of political control and influence by Catholic princes, aristos, etc.

Anonymous said...

If blood-tribalism is natural but the Christian Church put a damper on it, how could the Christian Order have lasted for so long? We saw from communism that something that goes against human nature cannot last long. Ultra-universalism is bound to fail.
I suppose one argument is that Christianity never gained totalitarian control over the West, and so it tolerated lots of non-Christian practices, which, in turn, meant people could tolerate Christianity also.

But maybe another reason is that Christianity did the bee-sugar-honey-swap trick. I once saw some honey-harvester-guy place a cup of sugar water while he was taking the honey from the bees. Some bees buzzed all around him but other bees were busy sucking on the sugar water as a substitute to notice.

So, how did Christianity offer a substitute kin-consciousness while suppressing the more worldy one? Christians were told that Jesus wasn't merely God in Heaven but God who came to them in flesh and blood. He was Son of God, Son of Man. There's also a lot of blood in Christianity. When Jesus gets whupped real bad, as in PASSION OF THE CHRIST, his blood doesn't just spill but becomes splattered onto us and soul-mixes with our blood. And there is the whole stuff about wine being His blood and bread being his Flesh. Jesus was God as our brother, son, father, friend, cousin, uncle, etc sacramentally connected to us in blood and flesh.
In the Deep South, they talk about Him like he's that favorite uncle that came to hand out the goodies to everyone at the family reunion. The appeal of Jesus to Christians isn't just spiritual, philosophical, or abstract but meta-tribal, blood-relationary, and so on. His bloody death is like a bloody childbirth. Through His death and resurrection, He has become the #1 relation to all of us--in terms of both loving attachment and guilt-conscience on our part. (It's like 'oh my, we killed our favorite uncle!') And paradoxically, He is kin to all Christians precisely because He didn't have a wife and children. If He had wife and children, his progenies would be more special than other people, as in Judaism where the children of Abraham are said to be chosen over other races. And one of the schisms in Islam is blood-related, with Sunnis and Shias split on who were the rightful inheritors of Muhammadean faith. I think the Sunnis say the Muslim elders were, and Shia say Ali, the nephew of Muhammad, should have been, but don't quote me on that.
Now, remember how Jesus was tempted by Mary in the Scorsese film? And He was about to go with the wife/child thing too, but He realized that if He's to be related to all humanity, He has to spill blood so that it will be mixed as sugar-water-for-honey-swap-thing for everyone. He can't just pour his blood into his own kids; he has to splatter blood for all to share.

So, it's possible that Christianity's bitter suppression of natural blood-tribalism was sweetened by the notion that all Christians are part of the Son-of-God tribe, and we could be with the Son-of-God/Son-of-Man by drinking wine and eating bread. Christianity didn't so much suppress kinnery but spiritualized it. In its own way, it is a biological religion, or bioligion.

PS. Obama is a clever case of Jewish liberals promoting both biodeology and neo-Christism. We are told that Obama is the ideal human cuz he's part of the mixed-blood tribe, which all of us too can and should join. If race-mixing produces such an ideal human being--though I personally think he's repulsive in every way--, we need to mix blood to create the superior mixed-blood race.
But Obama is also promoted as a messianic figure, the new Christ, a person who feels at home in all parts of the world. Jews have a lot of practice with this thing after controlling Hollywood for a 100 yrs.

Anonymous said...

There are many theories on why western civilization uniquely went where it. Economic, political, historical, geographic
explanations exist aplenty.

But how about the chair theory? Maybe western man advanced largely
by removing his butt from the ground. The triumph on the elevated rump. The end of anatomy may have paved the way to the End of History.

Take an classical orchestra. Everybody's sitting down on chairs--the players and the audience. They're elevated from the ground.
There's a sense of dignity, of departing from the limitations of the earth, nature, etc.
Just imagine a symphonic orchestra where everyone's sitting his ass on the ground or with knees bent. It would not only be difficult to play some instruments, but more crucially, the whole nature of the musical culture would change.
Can you imagine beethoven composing his stuff while sitting on his butt?
Can you imagine wagner or liszt sitting on their butts?
Not likely. they had a sense of man as elevated from the clinging
mother earth power. Their butts and testicles had to pulled away from the gravitational pull of mother earth and be positioned on the sturdy, hard, patriarchal(or patriarchitectural) technology of the chair for them create their robust, powerful, dignified, and forward-looking and upward reaching music.

Now, consider the nonwestern traditions in music. Sitar players sit on their butts. Many chinese players also sit on their ass. Japanese
too. And Arabs.
All these traditions feel closer to the earth than the sky. That's
why their civilizations didn't reach the heights of the west. When your ass is planted to the ground, it's hard to climb up the
mound.

And, it's not just music but everthying. Take the Western movie. John wayne doesn't like to sit his ass on the ground. Cowboys sit on the ground only when they're roaming about and have to set up camp.

Anonymous said...

Otherwise, they like to go to a saloon and sit down and drink.
Compare this with the Indian. Indians are always sitting on the
ground. When the butt is always on the ground, it shapes the way one sees the world. It makes a person more conservative, more respectful of what already is. This is why the indian felt close to the soil.
Nature was his mother, father, brother, cousin, and uncle.
But, the white man, separated from the soil by the chair, could see nature for what it really is. A lot of dirt. so the white man kept his butt clean,
farmed the land, and grew corn.
Take the movie SEARCHERS. When john wayne sits in Scar's tippee, he looks ill-at-ease and not only because he hates the Indian Chief's guts. It's
because he's a white man into taming the earth. Such a man doesn't like to be ONE WITH the earth. He wants to separate himself from earth either by standing, riding a
horse, or sitting on a chair(or even a dismounted saddle around a
campfire).

Now, you might say indians had no chairs cuz they were primitive.
But what about high civilizations like Japan, India, Arabia, etc.
these people could make chairs like medieval europeans, and indeed they did have chairs.
But, why did euroepans--even when they were backward--like to sit on chairs(no matter how crudely made) while japanese, arabs, and hindus liked to sit on their ass even when they possessed chairs?

Sitting on the ground not only keeps man close to earth but it
accentuates the sense of hierarchy within society. A nobleman
sitting on a chair facing his vassals sitting on their asses makes for a heightened sense of inequality that is accepted by the society at large. Primitive folks sat on their asses. But when they developed civilizations in the nonwestern world, only the noblemen sat on chairs
while the masses remain on their butts.

The unique accomplishment of the West was raising the butt-level of
the masses as civilization advanced. So even before there was democracy and enlightenment and such in the west, there was a
subliminal butt-sense that all butts were created equal, in physical-and-psychological terms. How we use and position our bodies have a profound impact on how we think. For example, people who practice the art of bowing are likely to be less democratic minded
that where people simply shake hands.
So, a people who were universally sitting on chairs were more likely
to advance toward freedom than peoples where everyone sat on their ass or where only the noblemen sat on chair while underlings sat on their
asses.

Anonymous said...

Think of arabs in Mosques. They kneel on the floor and when they bow down to pray, their butts stick out. (How can any god love that sight?) Imagine Christians doing that. No, Christian churches, even primitive ones, have chairs.
Think of Hindus. They sat on their asses(and ate with their hands)
and remained backward.
Think of japan. It remained backward until the late 19th century when the Japaense decided to adopt the western chair(along with guns, machinery, etc of course).
Think of countless other examples.
Now, universal chairdom doesn't necessarily lead to freedom and
progress and individual dignity and respect. But, it seems to be a necessities for proper psychological relation to space.
How we relate to the space around us determines our sense of limitations, possibilities, proprieties, and experimentation.
A man on the ground is rooted in the way things already are.
A man elevated from the ground feels a sense of freedom and power. He
feels a bit closer to the heavens.
A man sitting on his ass plants the full weight of body on his ass.
the sensation in his ass and the discomfort of his testicles ALWAYS
inform--even if subconsciously--his mental processes.
But a man on a chair whose weight is distributed to his legs and
arms(if chair has armrest) feels liberated from the ass-centric
domination of the world. He doesn't feels anchored to the ground via the
butt but a sense of confidence that he can rise above nature's tyranny.
Also, a chair-person is more likely to do things without feeling tired. If you're sitting on a chair and have to go the
kitchen, it's no big deal.
But, if you're sitting on your ass, you have to stand up to do
everything and then sit down again. Everything feels like a chore. A sense of gloom overtakes you and you feel the world is
pessimistic and full of toil. Chair-people feel animated and free in the world. Butt-folks feel rooted and chained by the world.


Of course, there are different kinds of chairs as well and they also affect our way of thinking. Liberals like bauhaus chairs and that accounts for their chic alienation. Lazy folks
like lazy-boys and that's why they are fat and worthless.
Puritanical christians like hard stiff-backed wooden chairs and that accounts for their humorlessness.
(Blacks, unlike whites and other non-white cultures, may have a more difficult time maintaining civilization cuz they always gotta be shaking their booties.)

Western music is more poised, dignified, mathematical, and etc than all the others because western musicians have been chair-centered. The music of asia and arabs is less orderly and why? It could be because their butts are planted to the ground and affected by the weird seismic tremors of the earth which
affects their thinking process.
It's like when you plant your ear on someone's tummy, you hear all sorts of funny sounds.
When western man sat on the chair, he removed his rear-ear
from the groaning of the earth and made MAN's music. But non-western
man still had his rear-ear stuck to the ground and his music is like alot of groans and moans. If Mozart had sat on the ground, he might have given us raga or peking opera or some atonal japanese music. Western music is a kind of musical chairs.

but, western christian folk sit on chairs and sit hymn(restless black
folks just gotta stand and turn christianity into a jive ass boogie so
they don't count) and are full of dignity, self-respect, and
progressivity.

When you sit on a chair, not only is your rump elevated but you become a geometric figure. You go from a round mound of flesh to a
structured being.
You go from fuzzy indistinctness to mathematical clarity. Try to
teach algebra to a bunch of students sitting their butts on the ground. This is
why western schools provide chairs.

corvinus said...

And now Catholics should continue the process of world domination by marrying non Europeans. I hadn't recognized the strategy before. But it all makes sense now considering Catholics show no interest whatsoever in converting Europeans who aren't already Catholic.

This attitude may date from the times when Protestant authorities forbade the practice of Catholicism, and even after they loosened up in the 1800s, the Catholics were leery of pissing off the Protestant rulers again. Similar to why the Catholics didn't bother trying to convert Muslims, after some early failed attempts. They actually became quite cynical; the French rulers of Algeria imposed reverse jizya (punitive taxes on Muslims) and other severe restrictions.

Since Vatican II, in fact, the modern Catholic Church tends to actually reject converts from Protestant denominations, and recently has been accepting Anglicans without making them change their worship services at all. Ironically, the traditionalist groups such as the Society of St. Pius X who still say the historic Mass in Latin (the Catholic equivalent of ultra-Orthodox Jews) take anybody, so in England and Sweden, the mainstream church is full of immigrants (mostly Poles and nonwhites) while the traditionalists are majority English or Swedish.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the democratization of horse-ownership and then the arrival of the auto did much to produce a wider sense of community.

In traditional society, the kings and nobles owned horses. Some farmers had horses but more to work the fields than to ride. So, for most people, they were lowly folks on the ground while noblemen were elevated high up on their horse. Even today, mounted cops look pretty impressive, immeasurably more intimidating than flatfoots. And one of the reasons why South American natives were freaked out by the Conquistadores was that that Spaniards were atop big horses. Some natives even thought man-and-horse were one.

In traditional Europe, noblemen were on horses, and commonfolk often had to look up to them from the ground.
But in America, especially in the West, taming/buying/owning a horse became a common thing. Even a lowly cowhand could own a horse. He didn't have to look up to any man.

And then, the car replaced the horse. A rich guy could afford a fancier car, but even a fancy car cannot tower over other cars. The only way for the modern rich to tower over others is to live in penthouse condos--but then government housing projects rise pretty high too.
Psychology is linked to physicality. The relation of man and his space partly shapes how he sees the world and other people.

PS. Could the Mongols have gained the great advantage cuz they democratized horse-ownership? In China, only the rich and privileged owned and rode horses. Most Chinese were dirt-peasants with some pigs and always crouching down to plant rice.
In contrast, owning and riding a horse was the common thing among all Mongols, from the powerful chieftains to the lowly warrior. China may have more soldiers but Mongols had more of what was in those days the airforce. It's as if every Mongol owned a fighter-plane. Just like airpower kicks butt today, horse-power(there were literally 100,000s of Mongol horsemen)was The thing in those days. If Chinese had democratized horse-ownership, they might have been able to fend off the mongols.

Anonymous said...

But China prolly didn't want to democratize horseownership because it would have undermined a sense of strict hierarchy between leaders and the led.

Anonymous said...

"it makes me question how anyone could have had a good enough grasp of who were fifth/sixth cousins to stop them marrying each other."

I doubt very much anyone would have the faintest idea who their 5th or 6th cousin was *except* perhaps nobility who maintained very detailed genealogies (which makes me think the higher level bans may have been a way to make money from dispensations).

I think the lower level bans are the important bit.

Anonymous said...

"And why were so many kings and emperors simpering wimpering morons?"

They weren't - at least not for most of history where they had to lead their army into battle. The ones that were like that were usually killed or died in rebellions.

Steve Sailer said...

So, one thing we can say is that a very powerful institution in Europe, the Catholic Church, leaned against cousin marriage. In contrast, lots of other cultures find cousin marriage highly sensible.

Crawfurdmuir said...

The case of Charles II of Spain is not an illustration of "too much Habsburg." The bad genes were from the highly inbred house of Trastámara, coming from his ancestress Joan the Mad. There was mental unsoundness in the Spanish line, seen also in the eldest son of Philip II, Prince Charles of the Asturias. Joan the Mad was the latter's great-grandmother both on the paternal and maternal sides.

Joan the Mad shows up fourteen times in the ahnentafel of Charles II. By my calculation, 13/32 of his genes came from her - over 40%.

hbd chick said...

@forty percent - "Not all tribal / clannish cultures practice cousin marriage. For example, Circassians absolutely forbid cousin marriage. The Chechens don’t seem to practice it either."

true. but both the circassians and the chechens have endogamous marriage practices, i.e. they don't marry (much) outside of their groups. i don't know much about either group, but they don't strike me to be as tribal as, say, afghanis and arabs who not only marry within their respective groups, but also marry their cousins.

@forty percent - "It’s not clear that cousin marriage was widespread in Europe before the Catholic prohibition."

eh. there are a lot of good indications that it was the case. maybe the rates weren't as high as, say, pakistan nowadays, but it very likely was a' happenin'.

hbd chick said...

@forty percent - "Scandinavian nations, with the shortest history of Catholicism, have even smaller rates of cousin marriage then very Catholic ones like Italy and Spain."

yes, but many of the protestant churches (including the church of sweden, for instance) also banned cousin marriage during different periods.

@forty percent - "In places where consanguity rates are very high, Morrocco to Pakistan, it’s one of the factors preventing the rise of functioning European style nation states.

"But it probably wasn’t all that important in the last say ~3,000 years of European history. Or for that matter in the history of China, Japan, Sub-Saharan Africa."


but you're contradicting yourself. on the one hand, you're saying that inbreeding -- especially at high rates -- prevents the rise of functioning nation-states, while on the other you're saying that low inbreeding rates in europe didn't have an effect on the rise of nation-states. which is it?

if heavy inbreeding retards modern nation-state development, shouldn't the corollary be that outbreeding promotes it?

hbd chick said...

@crawfurdmuir - so, essentially you are saying that the medieval church was not effective at enforcing its regulations on marriage (am i right?).

you may be right.

on the other hand, several folks i've read (or am planning to read!) have said the opposite:

The development of the family and marriage in Europe

The European family: patriarchy to partnership from the Middle Ages to the present

Sacred Trust - The Medieval Church as an Economic Firm

"Family structure, institutions, and growth – the origin and implications of Western corporatism"

(*hbdchick throws her hands up in confused despair*)

K(yle) said...

People arguing that the medieval Church didn't have the ability to influence marriage due a lack of legal authority are demonstrating their applied autism here.

It's not just a simple legal matter. The Church didn't have much power (in the form of performing arrests, conducting trials, and doling out punishments) anywhere yet we have a clearly very Christian culture none the less. People were afraid to go against the Church because they feared for the fate of their souls.

If the Church says it is bad to have children with your cousin then you are going to take it seriously even if there is no Inquisition coming to put the thumbscrews to you.

People were very, very religious. The Church had real power all over Europe. It doesn't matter if the Monarch or Lord appointed Bishops due to concordance agreements. They are still being selected from a pool basically controlled by the Church.

We can't even pick candidates with differing viewpoints for Congress. How much ability do you think a Monarch really had in getting an ideological spread out of his candidates for Bishop? Much less so why he would even care about banning cousin marriage enough to make a point of it anyway.

hbd chick said...

@anonymous @6/8/11 11:49 PM -

in your first comment you said:

"If the clan-level force is weakened it makes it easier for tribal co-operation to become the default mode. It's not a weakening of blood-ties it's a shift in the balance between near-kin and far-kin.

then you said:

"If the degrees of relatedness were instead 8 and 6 then the value for B at the tribal level would only have to be 4/3 bigger than the value of B at the clan level. The smaller the gap between degree of relatedness between near-kin and far-kin the smaller the gap between additional reproductive benefit needs to be before tribal level co-operation makes sense.

yes. but don't you alter the gap between the degree of relatedness between near- and far-kin by altering with whom you mate?

you can mate with your sisters (eww) and, therefore, have a really large degree of difference between your near- and far-kin ... or you can marry someone from two villages over and so narrow the difference.

weaking the clan-level force is a weakening of blood-ties. that's how you get there, no?

hbd chick said...

@anonymous @6/9/11 12:28 AM - "I am afraid HBD chick has got it wrong. All European states were (and still are), defined by language."

Genes Mirror Geography Within Europe

hbd chick said...

@londoner - "...is likely to lead to a huge rise in accidental consanguinity over the coming generations, with lots of youngsters who unknowingly share a daddy producing offspring of their own."

yes. and they find each other strangely, overwhelmingly attractive!

hbd chick said...

@douglas knight - thnx! (^_^)

hbd chick said...

@anonymous @6/9/11 10:27 AM - "Just years of war, massacres, violence, struggle, political contest, etc."

symptoms of the biological divisions. just like between bands of chimps. or meerkitties.

Anonymous said...

hbdchick
"yes. but don't you alter the gap between the degree of relatedness between near- and far-kin by altering with whom you mate?"

Yes, i'm agreeing with you, except...

"weaking the clan-level force is a weakening of blood-ties. that's how you get there, no?"

It depends what level you're looking at. You're weakening the blood-ties at the clan level while at the same time strengthening the blood-ties at the tribe level.

hbd chick said...

@anonymous @6/9/11 8:22 PM - "It depends what level you're looking at. You're weakening the blood-ties at the clan level while at the same time strengthening the blood-ties at the tribe level."

yes! wait. i think we agree. (^_^) (or i forgot what the discussion was about....)

Crawfurdmuir said...

@Kyle - it was not that the Church lacked legal authority, but rather that papal bulls and decretals on such matters as marriages to fourth cousins had little force outside the temporal demesnes of the pope. The centralization of papal authority began at the time of the Counterreformation and did not reach its present extent until Vatican I in 1870.

In the middle ages, there was very little direct communication between the papacy and the laity outside the pope's temporal demesnes. Bishops were in practice appointees of secular monarchs, and parish priests were appointees of their barons and squires. What was taught in the pulpits and enforced in the dioceses was not exact conformity with the rulings of Rome, but varied from kingdom to kingdom. The farther one got from Rome, the less conformance there was with its dictates, and the more likely local custom was to be observed. For example, Jon Arason, the last Catholic bishop of Holar, Iceland (decapitated 1550) had two acknowledged sons, despite the requirement of priestly celibacy in the Latin rite.

The practical indifference of the church to its theoretical prohibitions must also be considered. As an example, Catherine of Aragon was initially betrothed to Prince Arthur, the eldest son of Henry VII, and married him in 1501. Arthur died in April of 1502; a papal dispensation was obtained in 1503 so that she might be betrothed to Prince Henry (later Henry VIII) despite having been his brother's wife and hence within a canonically prohibited degree of kinship. When, years later, Henry wished to divorce her, he based his argument on the canonical prohibition, which he claimed had been improperly waived. He brought great scholarly weight to bear on his side. In 1529, at Henry's behest, archbishop Cranmer sent Richard Croke as an emissary to Venice to solicit the support of the very learned Franciscan, Francesco Zorzi (author of "De harmonia mundi" [1525]) on this question, which he obtained; but it was of no use in persuading the pope. This episode illustrates how relatively insignificant the rules regarding consanguinity were with respect to the diplomatic considerations of the day.

At a less exalted level, apart from royalty and the great nobility, few people would even have known who might be their fourth cousins. The mechanism for enforcing any prohibition against consanguineous unions would have been solely by the publication of the marriage banns, a custom which was intended to allow objections to be brought to a marriage. The vestige of this practice is still found in the part of the marriage ceremony in which the officiant asks if anyone has cause to show why a couple should not be joined in wedlock, let him speak now or forever hold his peace. The publication of banns was not required until the Lateran Council of 1215, the same that your Fukuyama quotation indicates relaxed the rules on consanguinity.

Thus the means of enforcing the older, strict rules - even in territories under direct ecclesiastical rule - were almost non-existent before 1215, and after it were still fairly haphazard. The Reformation, of course, took place only a little more than 300 years after that, and this led to the adoption of the present Table of Kindred and Affinity, which prohibits only first cousins from marrying. So, the notion that church law actively required distantly exogamous marriages for most of European history is not easily sustained by these facts - even if we do not consider the extensive genealogical records, quarterings of arms, and other indications that, at least among the nobility and gentry, marriages routinely took place amongst persons closer in consanguinity than fourth cousins.

Crawfurdmuir said...

Further apropos of the claim that lay patronage of ecclesiastical benefices made no difference because "they are still being selected from a pool basically controlled by the church" - again, you are basing your ideas of the pre-Reformation church on the post-Reformation phenomenon of Ultramontanism in the Roman Catholic church.

The nobility and gentry sent their younger sons into the church, and the rights of lay presentation were intended to allow them to select their kinsmen as parish clergy in their territories, or just to find them sinecures. Talleyrand is a late example of the type - he was given an abbacy while still in minor orders. The aristocracy, not the church, controlled who the clergy were.

When a king wished to appoint a bishop, he sent the cathedral chapter, who nominally elected their bishop, the name of his candidate, with "congé d'elire" (leave to elect him). The candidate need not even have been a priest. If he were not, he would be ordained one before being consecrated a bishop.

It is true that St. Thomas à Becket disappointed his royal patron, but he was exceptional. That is why he was canonized. Most mediæval bishops did not disappoint their patrons, and very few of them were saints.

frigg said...

"Like another non-pc woman, Dr. Mary Lefkowitz..."

LOL. Lefkowitz didn't like a group narrative that conflicted with her group narrative. If she's considered "non-PC" it's default, kind of like the chaps filling the neo-con posse. She dissembles as much as the rest.

hapsburg post child said...

"The case of Charles II of Spain is not an illustration of "too much Habsburg." The bad genes were from the highly inbred house of Trastámara, coming from his ancestress Joan the Mad. There was mental unsoundness in the Spanish line, seen also in the eldest son of Philip II, Prince Charles of the Asturias. Joan the Mad was the latter's great-grandmother both on the paternal and maternal sides.

Joan the Mad shows up fourteen times in the ahnentafel of Charles II. By my calculation, 13/32 of his genes came from her - over 40%."

Well, Ok. I do know about Joan the Mad (who could forget such a handle) and took her into consideration; but didn't the long jaw and lip come from the Hapsburgs?

lelsey said...

If you mean the various Czars and Kings and Queens of England, they were/are not really morons. They're just ordinary people in extraordinary positions, upon which people still tend to place mythic expectations.

Crawfurdmuir said...

I'm not sure where the Habsburg jaw or lip came from, whether it was in the Habsburg line before the Trastámara alliance, in the Trastámara line, or whether it was simply a consequence of excessive inbreeding in the 16th and 17th centuries. The physical condition of Charles II of Spain, as well as of several of his ancestors, sounds a great deal like acromegaly (look at a profile of Rondo Hatton - he had a "Habsburg jaw," although any genealogical connection is quite unlikely).

But the mental condition of Charles II is not attributable to acromegaly, which isn't normally accompanied by imbecility. Several of Charles's relatives also had acromegalic features, but were not mentally impaired - e.g., his father-in-law the emperor Leopold I, who was a competent statesman, a patron of the arts, and skilled at musical composition. The emperor Rudolph II had a milder case of Habsburg jaw, and suffered from bouts of melancholia, but despite this managed to keep peace in his fractious empire by following a then-unusual policy of religious tolerance. His intellectual curiosity led him to support numerous artists - most famously, Arcimboldo - and scientists, including Tycho Brahe, Johannes Kepler, and Cornelis Drebbel.

The Habsburg jaw became much less noticeable in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries (probably due to the influx of Lotharingian blood via Francis I), and it is not evident at all in the features of the current family, e.g., the archduke Otto. They also appear to be a reasonably intelligent lot.

Anonymous said...

http://www.the-american-interest.com/article.cfm?piece=953