Polygenism

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Polygenism

 

a theory that views human races as different species having separate origins. Some advocates of polygenism contended that present-day mankind is represented not only by several species but even by several genera. Polygenism was used as the basis for various racist notions about the biological and intellectual inequality of human races. In the mid-19th century, for instance, the advocates of polygenism justified the legality of the slave trade. The untenability of polygenism is demonstrated by the similarity of various major characteristics, such as the structure of the hand and brain, among the races of modern man.

REFERENCES

Roginskii, la. Ia., and M. G. Levin. Antropologiia. Moscow, 1963.
Nesturkh, M. F. Proiskhozhdenie cheloveka, 2nd ed. Moscow, 1970.
References in periodicals archive ?
Graves 2005a demonstrates that the polygenist theory of human origins was the most popular naturalist view of the 19th century in both the United States and United Kingdom.
It also states claims that follow logically from polygenist as well as evolutionary theoy.
Here, it would seem that Emerson is endorsing a doctrine of the immutability of racial characteristics that would agree with the position of the polygenists.
Quatrefages replied that polygenists in the United States had in fact used their theories to justify slavery.
Though de Salle opposed Islam, he was astute enough to see how the arguments of polygenists could serve slaveholders and imperial adventurers.
Polygenist accounts of human diversity certainly became more widespread and systematic in the early nineteenth century.
The vocal minority of polygenist theorists who most affected discussions in the SEP were the physician Julien-Joseph Virey (1775-1846), the military officer and naturalist J.
The third Saint-Simonian Courtet was a harder-line polygenist than d'Eichthal.
Monogenists and polygenists cited the example of the Jews in proof or refutation of ideological positions on the innate or environmental origins of race.
Nott was a polygenist who wanted to "cut loose the natural history of mankind from the Bible" and place anthropology on a scientific footing.
It reiterated polygenist arguments that dehumanized the African as a species apart.
As late as 1909 Heller still found it necessary to refute stupid" and "inhuman" polygenist arguments that the African lacked a soul or Adamic descent.