Frosch (
3 Feb 95 03:48:04 GMT (M) writes:

>In article <3gmn4b$>,
>S. LaBonne <> wrote:
>>trying to classify "races", _using_ various "characteristics" _as
>>one must to construct a classification_, give radically incompatible
>>ancestors. That means that race is _not_ a reality in a biological
>>sense, period.

>Steve, although you raise several good points, you may be onshaky ground
>here. Becuase our classificantion schemes based on characteristics have
>not done well does not mean that race makes no biological sense. It
>could just be that , so far, we have not come up with the right
>characteristeics. It could be that a more "biological" approach (focused
>on genes and gene products, say) could produce a meaningful, biological
>framework for race. Because we dont have it now, does not mean that it
>does not exist.

but given that we don't have it now (and may never have it,
despite more than two centuries of trying to establish it), there
is good reason to say that "race" is not a biologically meaningful
classification. and the "biological" approach you suggest has
been tried for a long time too. lewontin's 1974 paper, showing
that 95% of human genetic variation was found within the "races"
was an early shot against racial classification from the genetic
side, and it lined up well with what a number of anthropologists
had already been arguing on the basis of phenotype.