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Seymour W. Itzkoff (born in1928) is an American professor known for his controversial research into intelligence.

Born in Brooklyn, New York, Itzkoff earned a B.A. degree from the University of Hartford. While at school, he was a cellist with the Hartford Symphony Orchestra; he then joined the United States Army, playing in the U.S. Army Orchestra. He later taught elementary school while earning a master's degree in philosophy from Columbia University in 1956. While studying for his doctorate, he taught education at Hunter College, CUNY. He earned his Ph.D. from Columbia in 1965, and took a position at Smith College that year.

Itzkoff was married while attending Columbia and subsequently had two children.

Itzkoff's work on intelligence has been published in Mankind Quarterly, and he has been a Pioneer Fund recipient. The ensuing tension echoed similar problems faced by Pioneer Fund recipient Linda Gottfredson at University of Delaware. One historian wrote, "While the Delaware and Smith cases are unique, they illustrate an inherent tension between freedom in research and other central academic values."[1]

In 1994 he was one of 52 signatories on "Mainstream Science on Intelligence," an editorial written by Gottfredson and published in the Wall Street Journal, which defended the findings on race and intelligence in The Bell Curve.[2]

Itzkoff, who is an advocate of eugenics, wrote the preface to John Glad's 2008 book, Future Human Evolution: Eugenics in the Twenty-First Century, in which he states, "The real history of eugenics, as Dr. Glad points out, is rich in a truly liberal vision for the improvement in the state of all of humankind."[3]

Selected bibliography

  • Cultural Pluralism and American Education, 1969
  • Ernst Cassirer: Scientific Knowledge and the Concept of Man, 1971
  • Emanuel Feurermann, Virtuoso, 1979
  • The Form of Man, 1983
  • Triumph of the Intelligent, 1985
  • How We Learn to Read, 1986
  • Why Humans Vary in Intelligence, 1987
  • The Making of the Civilized Mind, 1990
  • The Road to Equality, 1992
  • The Decline of Intelligence in America: A Strategy for National Renewal, 1994


  1. ^ O'Neil, Robert M. Free Speech in the College Community. Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 1997. pp. 174-75
  2. ^ Gottfredson, Linda (December 13, 1994). Mainstream Science on Intelligence. Wall Street Journal, p A18.
  3. ^ From preface to Future Human Evolution: Eugenics in the Twenty-First Century, abridged online version

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