Saturday, March 31, 2018

Shit, it's Schopenhauer

I've always been conflicted about Schopenhauer with his tendencies to misogyny and anti-Semitism. Both those tendencies are not as simple as they have been represented, but still they are bad enough. And Schopenhauer is no different than other revered philosophers in his racism, even Hume and Voltaire were racists as Ezra Klein demonstrated in his recent take-down of Sam Harris.

But it looks as though Schopenhauer might have invented the Northern Superiority hypothesis, which I had previously given credit to Richard Lynn.
The German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer (1788–1860) attributed civilizational primacy to the white races, who gained sensitivity and intelligence via the refinement caused by living in the rigorous Northern climate:
The highest civilization and culture, apart from the ancient Hindus and Egyptians, are found exclusively among the white races; and even with many dark peoples, the ruling caste, or race, is fairer in colour than the rest, and has, therefore, evidently immigrated, for example, the Brahmins, the Inca, and the rulers of the South Sea Islands. All this is due to the fact that necessity is the mother of invention, because those tribes that emigrated early to the north, and there gradually became white, had to develop all their intellectual powers, and invent and perfect all the arts in their struggle with need, want, and misery, which, in their many forms, were brought about by the climate. This they had to do in order to make up for the parsimony of nature, and out of it all came their high civilization.[50]
Again, as I asked before, if their original climate was so nice, why did these migrants leave and go to hostile climates? The proponents of the Northern Superiority hypothesis never seem to even think of that issue.