Richard Lynn

From RationalWiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Nazi Dick in 2008
The colorful pseudoscience
Race & Racialism
Icon race.svg
Hating thy neighbour
Divide and conquer
Despite his claims of persecution, Lynn has successfully translated his status as a scientist and open racist into a high-profile and profitable career, even though other scientists have repeatedly found his work to be riddled with methodological flaws and bias...prominent psychologist Leon Kamin stated that "Lynn's distortions and misrepresentations of the data constitute a truly venomous racism, combined with the scandalous disregard for scientific objectivity."
Southern Poverty Law Center profile on Richard Lynn[1]

Richard Lynn (1930–2023)[2][3] was a British white supremacist, psychologist, eugenicist,[4] conspiracy theorist, and self-described "race realist" who formerly taught at the University of Ulster. A former editor-in-chief of the prominent racist pseudojournal Mankind Quarterly and an interviewee of many fascist and neo-Nazi groups, Lynn had claimed for decades that genetics is responsible for racial inequality and international wealth inequality.


Unlike many other researchers with provocative conclusions about race, Lynn was willing to advocate for high-IQ, "genetically superior" societies closing their borders to keep the low-IQ inferior people out.[1] He was probably best known for his work with Tatu Vanhanen,Wikipedia a political scientist, estimating the average IQ scores of different countries.[5] This work has led him to the conclusion that Sub-Saharan African countries have average IQ scores of below 70, an estimate that has been heavily criticized because of his unsystematic methodology.[6] His work on alleged race differences in intelligence gained prominence when it was cited in The Bell Curve.[7] His work on African IQs has been shit on by the scientific community and is itself full of shit. In getting the IQ of natives of Equatorial Guinea, he tested 48 developmentally-disabled 10-year-olds living in Spain. To get the IQ of Ethiopians, he tested the IQ of illiterate Beta Israeli (Jewish Ethiopian) children who had just emigrated from a rural area in Ethiopia to an urban area in Israel. To get the IQ of Nigerians, he picked the lowest scores in an IQ study of seven Nigerian and Leonese children while ignoring several studies showing Nigerians having an average IQ far above 69 (for reference, chimpanzees have an IQ of around 50). To get the IQ of South Africans, he used a study testing 17 illiterate black South African children. To get the IQ of Somalians, he tested poor Somali refugees living in slums in Kenya and Ethiopia. In addition to these extremely questionable samples, there were many downward errors in translating test scores to IQs, in countries where no IQ research could be found Lynn would simply base their average IQ on neighboring countries, ignoring any social or economic differences (which might as well be tantamout to a violation of any academic integrity), and it seems very possible that he and his partner Vanhanen deliberately ignored tests giving Africans IQs above 75 and even discarded some relevant information from the studies they chose.[8]

Examples of shoddy research[edit]

Shoddy "research" he's published that has been shot down by other researchers includes the following:

  • His work on African IQs, which evidently use horrible samples to validate preconceived biases.
  • A study claiming to show that men are smarter than women — which was slammed by Nature as "simple, utter hogwash"[9]
  • Claiming that psychopathic personality is more common among blacks than whites.[10][11]
  • His work claiming that Irish people had lower IQs than English people was criticised by Ciaran Benson of University College Dublin.[12]
  • A study claiming to validate stereotypes about Asians having shorter dicks than whites and blacks having longer dicks than whites. Seriously. Unsurprisingly, this "study" was based on two highly-questionable sources, including a submission-based website that cited multiple nonexistent sources, and misrepresented other sources that actually exist.[13]

Influential scholars who have criticized his work include Nathan Brody (cognitive psychology researcher), James Flynn (cognitive psychology researcher), Steven Rose (neurobiologist and sociologist), Diane Halpern (cognitive psychology researcher and former president of the American Psychological Association), and John Hartung (anthropologist), among many others.

Conspiracist crankery[edit]

Lynn was a proponent of the white genocide and Great Replacement conspiracy theories. In an interview with Neo-Nazi Alex Kurtgaric he proclaimed that immigration will "lead to the death of Western civilization". Lynn also expressed support for separatist tendencies in the "predominantly white areas" of the Northeast and Northwestern United States because those areas have less brown people, and "instituting strict border controls" will "preserve Western civilization" in those areas. He ties these paranoid fears to his intelligence "research", stating that as the population of predominantly white countries become increasingly brown they will "decline in intelligence" and therefore will result in decreasing standards of living.[1]

We're going to quote Lynn's own bigoted technobabble about his racist synthesis of his bullshit IQ "research" and paranoid fears of white genocide:

I am very pessimistic about the future of the West. I think there are four problems. First, our populations are declining because we have below replacement fertility in all Western nations. Second, we have dysgenic fertility . .

Third, most Western countries have been experiencing massive immigration of non-Western peoples who will eventually become majorities. . . .

Fourth, in the world as a whole, there is much higher fertility in the low IQ countries. The effect of this is that the world’s IQ is deteriorating genetically and there is every reason to expect that this deterioration will continue for many decades.[3]

What Lynn conveniently neglects to mention is that non-white ethnic minorities have also seen declining birthrates.[14][note 1]


  1. This is due to the same factors that cause ethnic white majorities to have declining birthrates: rising economic prosperity and security, especially for women, has an incentive for people to have fewer children, and typically only later in life.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Richard Lynn profile, Southern Poverty Law Center.
  2. Edward Dutton on Twitter, 17 July 2023.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Taylor, Jared . "Richard Lynn: A Wonderful Man and a Great Scientist" - Prescott eNews republished from American Renaissance
  4. Eugenics: A Reassessment by Richard Lynn (2001) Praeger. ISBN 0275958221.
  5. The estimates are here, FWIW
  6. Controversial study of African IQ levels is 'deeply flawed'
  7. Neo-Nazis!
  8. Girma Berhanu, Black Intellectual Genocide: An Essay Review of IQ and the Wealth of Nations. ResearchGate, January 2007
  9. Who has the bigger brain?
  10. Personality, Intelligence And "Race Realism", Psychology Today
  11. Are there racial and ethnic differences in psychopathic personality? A critique of Lynn's (2002) racial and ethnic differences in psychopathic personality, Marvin Zuckerman, October 2003, Personality and Individual Differences, pp. 1463-9, doi:10.1016/S0191-8869(02)00362-8
  12. Ireland’s Low IQ: A Critique of the Myth, Benson, Ciaran, June 1987Irish Journal of Psychology 8(1):61-70 DOI:10.1080/03033910.1987.10557693
  13. The Pseudoscience of Race Differences in Penis Size
  14. Falloff in births slows shift to a majority-minority youth population" - Pew Research. June 26th, 2014.