Arthur Jensen

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Arthur Jensen at the International Society for Intelligence Research conference (2002).
The colorful pseudoscience
Race & Racialism
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Hating thy neighbour
Divide and conquer

Arthur Jensen (1923–2012) was an American white nationalist and psychologist who was arguably the father of modern day hereditarianism pseudoscience with the publication of an article in the Harvard Educational Review (1969).[1]

Although presenting himself as a political centrist and "objective scientist", the SPLC classifies Jensen as a white nationalist providing evidence of racist statements he made, as well as his associations with the far-right.[2]

The fake latter-day Galileo[edit]

As noted by the Southern Poverty Law Center:

Jensen worked hard to develop a reputation as an objective scientist who “just never thought along [racial] lines,” and to portray critics of his racist conclusions as politically motivated and unscientific. His followers and allies have continued to push this narrative, presenting Jensen as a latter-day Galileo, unfairly persecuted for his pursuit of scientific truth.

They point out though the "mask did occasionally slip" and Jensen exposed his underlying political agenda:

  • Jensen in 1992 was interviewed by the white nationalist Jared Taylor for American Renaissance and both of them agreed on numerous things that are common beliefs or goals of white nationalists e.g. the reduction of black birth rates, but non-reduction of white birth rates, support of eugenics and the pseudoscientific idea the black-white IQ gap is predominantly genetic, rather than sociocultural environmental (i.e. what became known as Jensenism) and the right-wing conspiracy theory cultural Marxist "egalitarians" have taken over academia and suppress opposing viewpoints.[3]
  • Jensen sat on the Editorial Board of the German neo-Nazi journal Neue Anthropologie (NA) published by the Society for Biological Anthropology, Eugenics and Behavioural Research and also wrote the NA article "Die falschen Anschuldigungen gegen Sir Cyril Burt" (1977).
  • Jensen's controversial research on race and intelligence was financially supported by the white supremacist Pioneer Fund.
  • Jensen was a racialist who held pseudoscientific views about race; in Intelligence, Race, And Genetics: Conversations With Arthur R. Jensen (2002) he is quoted as arguing there are 6 human races as genetic clusters, i.e. "Negroids", Australian aborigines/Melanesians, Pacific Islanders/Southeast Asians, "Mongoloids", Amerindians/Eskimos and "Caucasoids". Needless to say, Jensen was uneducated about clines and population genetics.
  • Jensen in 1973 argued there is possibly a link between skin colour and intelligence, writing "[t]he possibility of a biochemical connection between skin pigmentation and intelligence is not totally unlikely". The SPLC notes: "Jensen’s statement boils down to the claim that dark skin causes stupidity. No biologist would ever take such a statement seriously, and indeed, none has—though it is now a widely accepted belief among white supremacists."

Institute for Mental Chronometry[edit]

Jensen's legacy lives on through the Institute of Mental Chronometry which was founded by himself and others. Jensen is listed as the director of the organization in the organization's tax records for 2011.[4]

The organization was originally called Institute for the Study of Educational Differences[5] and received funding from the Pioneer Fund.[6]

The Institute is connected to the International Society for Intelligence Research and provides funding for that organization. In August 2023 the University of Minnesota announced that "the Institute of Mental Chronometry has awarded James Lee (PI) and Emily Willoughby (Co-PI) with a grant ($530,129) to study the “Foundations and Implications of Human Cognitive Ability.” The research includes the biological basis of reaction time, the existence and effects of selective placement in adoption studies, and drawing ability and visuomotor task performance."[7] Both Willoughby and Lee are members of the International Society for Intelligence Research: Willoughby is a board member[8] and Lee is a former board member.[9]


  1. His New York Times obituary
  3. A Conversation with Arthur Jensen. American Renaissance, August and September 1992.
  4. Form 990 PF Tax return for 2011 for the Institute of Mental Chronometry
  5. Form 990 PF (Retrieved November 1, 2023)
  6. Gottfredson funding ban
  7. Lee and Willoughby Awarded Grant to Explore Cognitive Ability through Innovative Research Press release - University of Minnesota (August 17, 2023) University of Minnesota website
  8. ISIR Board Members (Retrieved November 1, 2023)
  9. ISIR Officers (Retrieved November 1, 2023)