ALBERT Einstein espoused racist views in the 1920s including calling the Chinese “filthy” and the Japanese “intellectually weak.”
The iconic German physicist made the offensive remarks in his private travel diaries while touring North Africa and Asia between October 1922 and March 1923.
Getty – Contributor Albert Einstein’s racist attitudes have been revealed in his travel diaries from the 1920s
Einstein called Chinese people “industrious, filthy, obtuse people”, reports The Guardian.
He continued: “Chinese don’t sit on benches while eating but squat like Europeans do when they relieve themselves out in the leafy woods.
“Even the children are spiritless and look obtuse.
“It would be a pity if these Chinese supplant all other races. For the likes of us the mere thought is unspeakably dreary.”
He also questioned the attractiveness of Chinese ladies, saying: “I noticed how little difference there is between men and women.”
“I don’t understand what kind of fatal attraction Chinese women possess which enthrals the corresponding men…”
Getty – Contributor The German physicist wrote the remarks while travelling with his then-wife Elsa
These comments are in stark contrast to his views in the 1930s when the Jewish academic fled to the US amid Nazi persecution in his homeland.
In a 1946 speech at Lincoln University in Pennsylvania, he called racism “a disease of white people.”
But his apparent racist attitudes 20 years before are evident in travel diaries which have been published in English for the first time by Princeton University Press.
While in Port Said in Egypt, he said he was faced with: “Levantines of every shade… as if spewed from hell.”
And when the German was in Sri Lanka, then named Ceylon, he said: “They live in great filth and considerable stench down on the ground, do little, and need little.”
Alamy Einstein eventually fled Germany for the US amid Nazi persecution of Jews
Einstein also referred to the Japanese as “intellectually weak” while visiting with his then-wife Elsa.
He reportedly said the “intellectual needs of this nation seem to be weaker than their artistic ones – natural disposition?”
But he was more pleasant about people in Japan calling them “unostentatious, decent, altogether very appealing.”£
He added: “Pure souls as nowhere else among people. One has to love and admire this country.”
The papers were edited by Ze’ev Rosenkranz, senior editor and assistant director of the Einstein Papers Project at the California Institute of Technology.