More than 20 years before he co-authored THE BELL CURVE with Charles Murray, Harvard Psychology Professor Richard Herrnstein published a long article in THE ATLANTIC MONTHLY that foreshadowed the later book in its arguments and “findings.” Or course, if you wanted to know about human development at Harvard, you went to the Social Relations Department. The Psychology department specialized in animal studies. Herrnstein and his students did their work on pigeons, not people.
The Psychology department specialized in animal studies. Herrnstein and his students did their work on pigeons not people.
When the piece (called “IQ) came out in the fall of 1971, Claudio Buchwald and I were each beginnng our senior year as undergraduates at Harvard. We both would have graduated in the spring of 1971, except that we missed some semesters as we were among roughly 75 students over the course of 1969 to 1971 who were subjected to disciplinary leave due to our involvement in protest activities against the wars in Viet Nam and Cambodia and other issues.
Claudio and I studied over Herrnstein’s work and then performed this song before a crowd at Burr Hall and other places. I recently recorded it (along with other songs from that period) at the Checkpoint East studios in Orleans, Massachusetts. Eventually, it will be turned into a video along with the rest of the songs and will be available on my YouTube channel. But as I just finished it earlier this month, I have only got the audio version so far. It’s what I said then and what I would still like to say about IQ and intelligence.
Click on the hyperlink below and when you see a box that says, YouTube.com/watch, click on it.
Dale Borman Fink retired in 2020 from Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts in North Adams, MA, where he taught courses related to research methods, early childhood education, special education, and children’s literature. Prior to that he was involved in childcare, after-school care, and support for the families of children with disabilities. Among his books are Making a Place for Kids with Disabilities (2000) Control the Climate, Not the Children: Discipline in School Age Care (1995), and a children’s book, Mr. Silver and Mrs. Gold (1980). In 2018, he edited a volume of his father's recollections, called SHOPKEEPER'S SON.