there’ve been a lot — a LOT — of refutations of kanazawa’s post on the attractiveness of black women. i haven’t read them all — in fact i’ve read hardly any of them ’cause most of them just scream and yell WAAAAAAYCIST!! BURN HIM, BURN HIM!!
some of them, however, appear to be more scientific refutations. bering in mind links to another psychology today blogger (scott barry kaufman) who (along with someone named jelte wicherts in the netherlands) has supposedly (according to bering in mind) “failed to replicate” kanazawa’s findings.
i took at look at kaufman’s post — and the technical summary of their analysis — ’cause i thought, well gee — not able to replicate the findings — that’d be interesting.
IF IT WERE TRUE!
here’s the evidence that kaufman and wicherts present (in the blog post) to show that kanazawa’s analysis was incorrect:
looks like black women were rated nearly as attractive as white women, right? and they were. in wave iv.
here’s how they fudged the data.
the add health thingie (from whence all the data comes) involved four waves of surveys over the course of several years (a couple of decades?). kaufman and wicherts decided that the only wave that should be included in any analysis on the attractiveness of women is wave iv, because in that wave the females were of legal age and, therefore, women.
no, i’m not kidding. they really said that!
now, i would agree with them if the subjects in the previous waves had been pre-pubescent children. but the ages in the waves were:
wave i = mean age 15.9 years
wave ii = average age 16.5 years
wave iii = mean age 22.1 years
wave iv = mean age 28.9 years
now come on! ok, so in waves i-iii most or all of the subjects were not of legal age, but probably the vast majority (except maybe for some late bloomers in wave i) were “reproductively of age” — meaning they could make babies. which is what the whole discussion is about! attractiveness, after all, is about attracting a mate.
*cough, cough* cherry-picking *cough, cough*
kanazawa didn’t include wave iv in his analysis, which is the wave when the attractiveness of whites and blacks was rated the most similar. don’t know why he didn’t use the data from that wave. kaufman mentions that the data from that wave has been available “for over a month.” well, maybe kanazawa didn’t realize the newest data had been published when he ran his analysis. i really dunno, but it’s definitely possible.
in any case, waves i-iii show that black women were rated as less attractive, altho i think the numbers in wave iii are not statistically significant. in wave iv, as i’ve said above, the rating for whites and blacks were pretty similar:
i still wanna know who the interviewers|evaluators were. were they all white folks? all asians? all illegal mexican workers picked up outside home-depot? their characteristics might’ve influenced the results.
actually, now that i mention it, the fieldwork for waves iii and iv was contracted out to a different company than waves i and ii. wonder if that made any difference in the evaluations?
btw, some real word data from okcupid maybe lends more support to kanazawa’s findings:
“Men don’t write black women back. Or rather, they write them back far less often than they should. Black women reply the most, yet get by far the fewest replies. Essentially every race—including other blacks—singles them out for the cold shoulder.”
that’s too bad.
update 06/07: see also on the add health interviewers
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