(Turns on future technology super-computer, opens world simulation command prompt)

    >> 4 factions created

Variable human_type = [Caucasoid, Negroid, Mongoloid, Australoid]

for i in range(len(Factions):
    Generate human_simulations(quantity=100, anatomy=human_type[i])

Mode: Survival
Faction Split Criteria: human_type
Planet: Earth-like
Climate: Ice-age
Temperature: 4°C - 6°C
Technology Level: Stone Age, VARIABLE* (in 25% of simulations all factions have Caucasoid technology, 25% of the simulations all factions have Negroid technology, ect...)
Further Technological Progress: Disabled
Technology Handicaps: No living in caves
Geographic Handicaps: No living near equator or tropics
Faction Technology Disparity: None (all equal)
Inter-Faction Interaction: False
Exposure to Natural Disasters/Run-up Events: Equal (don't ask me how, it's just being held constant!)
Victory Condition: Survive 10000 years

Simulation Successful!

Simulation of the following factions has begun:

enter image description here

Let me start with some disclaimers so the purpose and scope is clear. Also it's important to read the disclaimers to keep the question from being too broad.

Disclaimer 1: I know that humans are a technology-intensive species, but the main purpose of this simulation/thought experiment has nothing to do with technology. That's why in the simulation I stipulate Technology Level: Stone Age, VARIABLE*. Meaning that upon simulation, all four factions of humans are brainwashed and given a random culture/technology level. For example, in a simulation where Technology= Stone Age(Caucasoid) that means Caucasoids, Negroids, Mongolids and Australoids are given Caucasoid Technology/Culture. That way technology and culture can be non-factors, allowing us to only examine physical/genetic attributes. I think this is the only way to do it because "Stone Age" technology is different in each part of the world. In your answer you can define your own scope as you see fit. For example, you may say things like: Generally, across all simulations ... or...In simulations where technology=Mongoloid ...

Disclaimer 2: Caucasoids, Negroids, Mongoloids and Austaloids are general skeleton types. Each one has many, many distinct ethnicities and historical cultures/technologies. In light of this, I'm narrowing the scope greatly by simply merging/averaging them. In other words, we are not nit-picking which specific ethnicity they are, but rather we are viewing them as aggregate cultural/technological embodiments of their many ethnicities -- with their technology averaged as well. Purely for illustration purposes, consider the following: say most Negroid stone age archaeological sites support the premise of having excellent sewing technology, except for a few outlier archaeological sites in this one country where the stitching is really bad or whatever, just consider Negroid sewing to be pretty good. That's what I mean by averaged. I'm not expecting an Archaeological Thesis or anything. Heck, if you think it's too complicated, then just ignore the culture/technology dimension altogether. I don't mind; like I said, I'm not interested in technology. I'm only interested in physical trait advantages/disadvantages.

From this futuristic simulation, I'm trying to answer a few inter-related questions. Namely, which traits of the factions would play a big role. For example, given the "No living in caves" handicap, unless I'm mistaken, that would mean Caucasoids would have a bit of a disadvantage because of their comparatively fair skin. Being unable to dwell in caves would force them to spend more time in the ultra-violet than their genetic lineage is accustomed to. However, I'm not sure if that would be a more of a small nuisance or a death-blow.

Question: If we uproot Caucasoids, Negroids, Mongoloids and Australoids from their respective ancestral geographic regions and force them to live in a cold ice-age world (with a few handicaps) as per the simulation above, would each faction have the same chances of success, all else held equal? Or would certain traits get in the way, what traits would be helpful?

Side Question: If you want to go the extra mile, consider answering this question too: Would each faction look the same after 10,000 years? Maybe a few would have died off?

  • $\begingroup$ so, among other things, you can tell a Caucasoid from a Mongoloid just from the skeleton? $\endgroup$
    – L.Dutch
    Mar 8 '18 at 11:04
  • 5
    $\begingroup$ Well since Caucasian people actually evolved pale skin and sticky frames to survive cold climates, I’d place my money on them $\endgroup$
    – Bryan 2
    Mar 8 '18 at 12:18
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Just as Caucasians adapted for Northern Europe, the East Asians adapted to cold deserts. So both would do fairly well right from the start. $\endgroup$
    – Dan Clarke
    Mar 8 '18 at 13:08
  • 8
    $\begingroup$ What you call "Negroid" (that is, sub-Saharan African) is actually 90% of the human genetic variability. The various "Negroid" lineages are not more closely related between them than they are with Europoid or Mongoloid peoples. That is to say, it is not possible to group the human species into lineages so that "Europoid" and "Negroid" are at the same level. If "Europoid" is chosen as a representative lineage then you must pick about half a dozen lineages from sub-Saharan Africa; if "sub-Saharan African" is chosen as a representative lineage then it includes all mankind. $\endgroup$
    – AlexP
    Mar 8 '18 at 13:17
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ @DanClarke: "Caucasians adapted for Northern Europe": The frakking Caucasus is definitely not in Northern Europe. It actually sits on the southern boundary between Europe and Asia. And I hope you realize that the Berbers of Algeria, the Bedouin of Arabia, the Persians of Iran, the Pashto of Afghanistan and most people of northern India are white people, to the extent that "white people" has any reasonable biological meaning. $\endgroup$
    – AlexP
    Mar 8 '18 at 13:21

If I had to pick one group it would be Negroids becasue most of human genetic variability is within that group, its not a big advantage but I you had to pick one group it would be that one just becasue they have more variability to work with. Of course evolution tends not to parse that way, it will be individual populations that survive and spread not wide racial groups but you are more likely to find the right combination of traits in that group.

But really all those groups will survive equally well, human variability is pretty minor, and so much will depend on other variables, like technology, location, livestock, run up events, etc. But your biggest effect will be which population was living is the most similar conditions you drop them in,the knowledge of the individual's dropped into this situation will have a much bigger effect than anything genetic.

If I drop Bob and Tom in a new environment and Bob was a hunter gather and Tom was a wall street stockbroker, Genetics matters less than the fact Bob knows how to start a fire and Tom does not.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I appreciate that you took the effort to answer despite having some qualms about the efficacy of wide racial traits. I did my best to try to control for other factors, like technology. I suppose I should also stipulate, each group will have an equal exposure to natural hazards; I'll put a few edits in the question. $\endgroup$ Mar 8 '18 at 15:45
  • $\begingroup$ I totally agree with your Bob and Tom example. That is why I felt compelled to put disclaimers about humans as a technology/skill-intensive species. Only by holding skills and technology equal could we compare racial traits. $\endgroup$ Mar 10 '18 at 11:24

I would say that there are not any significant differences between these groups. Not significant enough to make any difference in their ability to survive. Any trait that would prove difficult would be compensated for by some tool or clothing. Some groups would endure cold better than others. But that would probably last for just a few generations. "Asian / mongoloid" eyelids could prevent some particles from touching the eye, but other groups could just make a better hat, cape, mask or goggles.

Over time their appearance could change, probably making the darker skinned groups more pale. Generally they all should be more hairy. And "negroid" lips could get thinner. But that is about it.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Examples of cold-adaptation: Indigenous arctic-dwellers on Europe decended from Causasoid, while indigenous arctic-dwellers in Siberia and North America descended Mongoloid. $\endgroup$
    – user535733
    Mar 8 '18 at 13:07
  • $\begingroup$ @user535733 Are semitic groups also considered Caucasoid? Because that could indicate that it is more versatile than mongoloid group. Are Indians in Caucasoid group too? $\endgroup$ Mar 8 '18 at 13:30
  • $\begingroup$ @NuloenTheSeeker: "Semitic" refers to a family of languages, and by extension to the peoples who speak those languages; it does not refer to a human physical type. There is very little if any difference between the physical type and genetic makeup of Arabs (who speak a Semitic language) and Persians (who speak an Indo-European language). And yes, if the Europoid race has any kind of biological reality then Arabs, Persians, Afghans and most northern Indians (from India, not from the Americas) belong to it. $\endgroup$
    – AlexP
    Mar 8 '18 at 17:02

I'd look at body types that already have formed due to ice age conditions: Inuits/Inuvialuits for Asian stock, and Sami for European stock. They both came out fairly differently, depending on their main food source. Inuits survived on pinnipeds and cetaceans, and developed stockier frames and insulating fat to help better keep their core temperatures up. Sami depended on reindeer herding, and thus utilized a more lithe frame and compensated with furs.

The only reasons facial features would play into any of this might be the nose, and the ability to better insulate against heat loss via breathing, but even that would be minor and probably just involve hairier nostrils.


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