What do you think?
Rate this book
303 pages, Hardcover
First published April 1, 2011
He worked on what would become The Foundations of the Nineteenth Century from February 1896 to the fall of 1898, with a frenzy befitting the work's scope, for eight hours a day. After an appeal for God's guidance in the morning, some time was spent leafing through volumes of his well-stocked library in search of suitable quotations (with little regard for their contexts), which he then arranged in sweeping arguments abounding in inconsistencies aided by inaccuracies. Throughout he displayed the kind of logic he used in a letter to his aunt, in which he suggested that having lost a fortune speculating, he now enjoyed other investors' heightened confidence.
“Blumenbach was not a racist. A monogenist, he believed in the unity of human kind; a clearsighted scientist, he saw through allegedly impermeable lines between races and vociferously spoke out against the supposedly innate intellectual deficits of “Negroes.” And yet he regarded the Caucasian race—eponymously named after Mount Caucasus, thought to be its original habitat—not only as the original form of humankind, but also as “the most handsome and becoming.” Elevating Caucasians to aesthetic superiority, Blumenbach implicitly suggested that degeneration was decline and difference deficiency. ” (259, Kindle ed.)