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CHAPTER IX.

CROSSING BETWEEN HUMAN GROUPS.UNITY OF THE

HUMAN SPECIES.

I. We now know what are species and race; the phenomena exhibited by mongrels and hybrids furnish us with an experimental means of distinguishing them. We can, therefore, now reply to the question which has necessitated this discussion : Are there one or many human species ? Are the human groups races or species ?

Unless we pretend that man alone of all organised beings is free from the laws which, in every other case, govern and regulate the laws of reproduction, and consequently, unless we make him a solitary exception precisely in that order of facts which most closely unites all other beings, we shall be forced to admit that he also obeys the laws of crossing.

Thus, if the human groups represent a more or less considerable number of species, we ought to prove in the crossings of their species the existence of the characteristic phenomena of hybridism. If these groups are only races of a single species, we ought, in crossings between them, to meet with the phenomena exhibited by mongrels.

II. It is scarcely necessary to recall what nearly four centuries of experience and observation have taught us. be recapitulated in a very few words.

Since Colombus commenced the era of great geographical discoveries, the White, the highest division of mankind, bas penetrated to almost every part of the globe. He has everywhere met human groups which differed considerably from himself in every kind of character; he has everywhere

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mixed with them, and mixed races have everywhere sprung up in his track.

Further still, thanks to an institution, detestable indeed, but the results of which have been favourable to anthropology, the experiment is complete. The White has enslaved the Negro and taken him away with him to all parts of the globe, and where the local races have consented to intermix with the enslaved race, in every case they have produced mixed races of this inferior division. In America the Zambo is born side by side with the Mulatto and the Mamaluco.

This crossing commenced less than four centuries ago, and some time has elapsed since M. d'Omalius estimated that mixed races constituted at least a'r of the entire population of the globe, and be emphatically declared that he had only taken the half-breeds of extreme races into consideration.

In South America, where Whites, Blacks and natives have long been in contact and have intermingled more freely, there are whole States in which half-breeds are in the majority, and in which it is extremely difficult to find a native of

pure

blood. Have subterfuges or precautions been necessary to form these unions and to insure the fertility of the offspring ? Quite the contrary. The tyranny of the Whites, the crimes of slavery, afford quite sufficient proof that in this case fertility was not dependent upon circumstances, but simply upon the physical connections existing between all men from the lowest of the Negroes to the first of the Whites.

Has such facility, such certainty as this been experienced in the production of chabins and leporides ?

If another proof were necessary of the facility with which human groups intercross, it might be found in one of those testimonies the value of which is undisputed because they give the result of a daily experience. In 1861, the Californian legislature declared that any white person convicted of having cohabited with or married a Negro, Mulatto, Chinese or Indian, had forfeited all his rights, and became

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subject to all the constitutional incapacities imposed upon men of colour. The local press announced very plainly that the object of this measure was the prevention of the fusion and amalgamation of the races.

The Californian legislature acted on this occasion like the proprietor of a flock of pure breed which he is anxious to keep free from all mixture. It was even more severe, ejecting from legal society, not only the offspring of the cross, but also the transgressing parents of the white race.

Do not our breeders take similar precautions in the case of races only, and not in the case of species?

Far from being sterile, unions between human groups apparently the most distinct are sometimes more fertile than those between individuals taken from the same group.

“ Hottentot women," says Le Vaillant, with husbands of their own race have three or four children. With Negroes this number is tripled, and it is still further increased with Whites.” M. Hombron, during four years which he spent in Brazil, Chili and Peru, studied this phenomenon in a large number of families. “I am able to state," he says, "that unions of Whites with American women have given the highest average of births. Next come the Negro and Negress. Apd thirdly the Negro and the American woman." Unions between Americans themselves gave the lowest average.

Thus, the maximum of fertility is, bere presented in a case which would constitute a hybridism in the opinion of polygenists; the minimum is exhibited between individuals of the same group, and it is with the woman belonging to the latter, that, owing to the cross, the maximum is obtained.

These facts are significant. In no case of crossing between species has fertility been observed to increase; on the contrary it is almost always diminished, and often, as we bave seen above, in an immense proportion. Crossings between races have alone presented facts analogous to those mentioned by Hombron and Le Vaillant.

III. Thus, in every case crossings between human groups exhibit the phenomena characteristic of mongrels and never those of hybrids.

Therefore, these human groups, however different they may be, or appear to be, are only races of one and the same species and not distinct species.

Therefore, there is but one human species, taking this term species in the acceptation employed when speaking of animals and plants.

IV. Anyone who refuses to accept these conclusions must either deny all the facts of which it is the necessary consequence, or reject the method employed in the examination and appreciation of these facts.

But these facts are borrowed entirely either from scientific experiments, made without any discussion or controversy by men of the highest authority, or drawn from the innumerable experiments which are daily practised by agriculturalists, horticulturalists, and breeders. It is therefore very difficult to deny them.

As to the method, it is evident that it rests entirely upon the identity of the general laws governing all organised and living beings. Few true men of science will, I am sure, refuse to admit such a starting point as this.

Now I wish that candid men, who are free from partyspirit or prejudices, would follow me in this view, and study for themselves all these facts, a few of which I have only touched upon, and I am perfectly convinced that they will, with the great men of whom I am only the disciple, -with Linnæus, Buffon, Lamarck, Cuvier, Geoffroy, Humboldt and Müller, arrive at the conclusion that all men belong to the same species, and that there is but one species of man.

BOOK II.

ORIGIN OF THE HUMAN SPECIES.

CHAPTER X.

ORIGIN OF SPECIES. -HYPOTHESES OF TRANSMUTATION.

DARWINISM.

I. THE unity of the human race raises some general questions, and entails consequences which we must now examine.

The first question which is suggested to the mind is evi. dently that of origin. Without abandoning the strictly scientific aspect of the subject, that is to say, confining ourselves to the results of experiment and observation, can we explain the appearance on our globe of a being which forms a kingdom by itself? I do not hesitate to reply in the negative.

Let us admit at starting that we cannot consider separately the question of the human origin. Whatever

may

be the cause or causes which preside over the birth or the development of the organic kingdom, it is to them that the origin of all organised and living bodies must be traced, The similarity between all the essential phenomena which they exhibit, the identity of the general laws which govern them, render it impossible to suppose that it can be otherwise. The problem then of the origin of mankind becomes identical with that of all animal and vegetable species.

II. This problem has been approached very frequently and bv mapy methods. But here we can only take into account

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