Iceland is a barren moonscape created by tectonic plates rubbing against one another on something called the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. The result is a beauty you see nowhere else, but it also means not much can be grown on the island. The natives have to deal with a limited food supply from the ocean, thus developed a form of cannibalism in which the dead are processed into a product called Skyr. I’m kidding about that, of course. There are no cannibals on Iceland, but food is expensive and lacking in the sort of diversity we are used to seeing in the West.
The consequence of this is the range of desirable flavors in their food is very narrow. I was given a ham and cheese sandwich and surprised to learn how they eat them. Warm without any adornments or condiments. In the States, you would have more “other stuff” on the thing than the main ingredients. Most people would also have mustard or maybe mayonnaise as a condiment. Chatting with a couple of local women, they told me Icelanders think Americans make weird food that tastes funny.
That’s nature at work. Iceland was populated by Nordic males, who brought Celtic women with them. Recent DNA analysis suggests that around 66 percent of the male settler-era population was of Norse ancestry. The female population was 60 percent Celtic. They arrived, we think, in the year 874 AD, so this population landed on the island very recent. Inevitably some strong selection pressure was at work. You had to be within a small group, who would want to give it a go on Iceland. You had to have a certain constitution to thrive there.
Icelandic women are notoriously beautiful and that’s true, assuming you are a male from west of the Hajnal line. I could be wrong about that, but that’s my guess. The women are tall and thin with angular faces. You don’t see many fat women in Iceland, but that may be due to the cost of food. The other thing is the women do not wear much makeup, but when they do it, it is to accentuate their eyes. There is a great diversity of eye color with most being a shade of blue, but brown and green are common too.
I found myself staring at their eyes, registering the different colors and patterns. This was true in Ireland, but not so obvious. Many Irish women have let themselves go so they are not, on average, as beautiful as the Icelandic women. The Irish say the Icelandic settlers carried away the most beautiful Irish women. That’s a fun legend and probably a little true, but the numbers involved make that a bit implausible. What has ruined Irish women is alcohol and excess calories, but that’s true all over the West.
Diversity of eye color is a European thing. Africans and Asians lack this diversity and it is a good question for science to ponder. Humans evolved to be social animals and a big part of that starts with the eyes. There are something like 200 species of monkeys and apes with humans the only one with a visible sclera. That’s the white of our eye. In humans, it makes our eyes a signal. From any angle, we can perceive the thoughts, to some degree, of another humans. We can see where another is staring and infer something of what they are thinking.
This feature did not evolve for no reason and it is assumed to be a part of how we evolved as a social animal. Further, the diversity of eye color, as well, as hair color and texture, in European populations, is not an accident. If it had no value, it would not have happened. Clearly, diversity of hair color, hair texture, eye color and the features around the eyes began to have a reproductive advantage at some point. A purely social feature like eye color that is so strikingly different in Europeans, than anywhere else, suggests that European sociality may have evolved down a different path as well.
It is an example of what you hear from the more sophisticated in the HBD community. Early man in Europe was faced with much more difficult challenges than in Africa. As a result, males would have been at higher risk of death when hunting and traveling. When the sex ratio ceases to be balanced, when too many of one sex are competing for too few of the other, sexual selection intensifies. So a surfeit of females, relative to the male population, could have resulted in the diversity of eye and hair color, as women competed for the attention of males.
Put another way, environmental pressure changed the people, but then the people changed their environment, that is, their culture. Diversity of eye color, for example, resulted from nature killing off more males than females. That preference for diversity by mates would ripple through the population. People got better at being around people that did not look like them and better at having kids that did not look like them. Nature changes people, people change their culture and then the culture magnifies or mitigates the forces of nature.
It is what makes the Diversity™ rackets so craven and shallow. People are more than their skin, but that’s not what the grifters and charlatans would have us believe. According to the prevailing orthodoxy, people are all the same with pointless physical differences. Such thinking is anti-science and anti-human. It has been a long and complicated road for humans. No all of us went down the same roads or faced the same complications. Appreciating that is truly appreciating diversity.