Project on racism and "intelligence"


Historian Jim W. Porter recently took up his position as a post-doctoral research fellow at the HVC. Dr. Porter received his PhD at Michigan State University in the history of science for a doctoral thesis that examined the efforts of an influential network of scientists, politicians and educational policymakers to implement more systematic testing and ability grouping in US public schools in the mid-1950s.

Dr Porter’s postdoctoral project at the HVC examines how discourses about alleged hereditary individual difference structured educational opportunity in the post-Second World War United States. Specifically, it examines how a refashioned science of “intelligence" was quietly integrated into educational policy following Brown v. Board’s mandate to desegregate US public schools. We wish Dr Porter a warm welcome to the HVC!