The intelligence concept and racial classification as sociological products of Western education. Sociology Compass. Dec2021, Vol. 15 Issue 12, p1-17. 17p.

This article is a historical examination of how Western theorists created and utilized the intelligence concept and aligned it with racial classification to determine cognitive abilities. By the 1900s, Western theorists, without evidence, declared that intelligence exists as an inheritable, unchangeable mental condition. Influential Western theorists have exploited the intelligence concept to categorize the cognitive abilities of European descendants above that of non‐Whites, particularly African‐descended people as incessant deliberations emerged regarding the value of either cognitively superior or inferior racially defined groups. By interrelating geographical location with shared physical characteristics, Western theorists non‐scientifically divided the human family based on physical similarities among people and referred to them as races. These theorists incorporated the intelligence concept with racial classification as a sociological principle for educational development. According to the Theory of Multiple Intelligences, however, everyone has one or more forms of several intelligences. Although this theory appears to portray a different understanding from the original intelligence concept, it categorizes racial groups and individuals as having fixed levels of cognitive ability. Emphasizing intelligence as a descriptive factor to determine cognitive ability is an unscientific, unequitable characterization that has been employed to explain levels of social awareness and academic performance in Western education.