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Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Sociology

Abstract

In this thesis there has been attempted an analysis of scientific opinion and arguments on the subject of the innate equality and disequality of men. The views of various authorities, and the reasons they adduce in support of those views, have been presented and contrasted. Conclusion has been drawn that we have, as yet, insufficient evidence upon which to base a definite decision. The existence of variation of constitutional capacity appears to be very probable, but whether this is more or less influential than environmental forces is incapable of the determination. The latter forces are considered as being factors of much greater importance than is attributed to them by the extreme hereditarians. Furthermore, and most important for the subject of sociology, it is indicated that this uncertainty with regard to individual difference is multiplied many fold when group differences are considered. Indeed in the latter case there is absolutely no secure evidence, one way or another, and our social politics must be framed in recognition of the fact that variation of group ability is a quite unproven hypothesis.

McMaster University Library

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