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Maitani
When Did Roma Leave India?—New Discovery or Corroboration of Old Theories? « Europe « Places « GeoCurrents - http://geocurrents.info/cultura...?
When Did Roma Leave India?—New Discovery or Corroboration of Old Theories? « Europe « Places « GeoCurrents
When Did Roma Leave India?—New Discovery or Corroboration of Old Theories? « Europe « Places « GeoCurrents
When Did Roma Leave India?—New Discovery or Corroboration of Old Theories? « Europe « Places « GeoCurrents
"As was highlighted in a previous GeoCurrents mini-series on the history of English, popular media reports on scientific issues involving human history, migrations, and languages habitually pick studies whose claims contradict the current consensus; such studies are further sensationalized, while other work on the topic is generally ignored. An additional example is the popular media reports on a genetics study on the exodus of the Roma people (Gypsies) from India, recently published in Current Biology (“Reconstructing the Indian Origin and Dispersal of the European Roma: A Maternal Genetic Perspective”, 22(24): 2342-2349). According to a short article by Sindya N. Bhanoo in the New York Times, titled “Genomic Study Traces Roma to Northern India”, this “wide-ranging genomic study appears to confirm that the Roma came from a single group that left northwestern India about 1,500 years ago”. In actuality, the article in Current Biology makes no such claims. Instead, its contribution is much more modest. The main focus of the article is the different groups of Roma in Europe. The researchers examined genetic data from approximately 200 Roma individuals from the Iberian Peninsula, particularly their mtDNA (which traces maternal descent), which showed genetic similarity to the Roma from the Balkans region. Their conclusion is that the Roma of Spain and Portugal migrated via Southeastern Europe, contrary to popular views that some of the Roma came to the Iberian Peninsula via North Africa. A large part of the study concerns the issues of genetic affinities among Roma groups, the degree of admixture with neighboring populations, and migration routes followed since the first arrival in Europe." - Maitani from Bookmarklet
"To determine the location of the putative Roma homeland in India, the authors of the Current Biology article compared the DNA samples of European Roma with an extensive existing database of Indian sequences, conducting the analysis on both the regional and the state level. Their results “pointed at Punjab state (in North-Western India) as the most probable candidate to be the ancestral homeland of the Roma mtDNA types”, with a probability of 54%. Contrary to the way that the New York Timesarticle spins this finding, it is not a fresh discovery, but rather is “in agreement with previous linguistic and anthropological studies”, as the authors of the Current Biology paper readily admit in the abstract. Curiously, the second most probable location of the Roma homeland according to this genetic study is in Eastern India, specifically Bihar, Orissa, and West Bengal. While the probability of this region is only 20%, compared to Northwestern India’s 72%, it is significant in light of the fact that the rest of the regions—Northern India, Western India, Southwestern India, Southeastern India, and Northeastern India— together account for only 8% of the probability. So far, there is nothing in the historical, linguistic, or genetic record to indicate a connection of the European Roma to Eastern India, but as we shall see below, a linguistic connection does exist between Romani and Central Indic languages, spoken in what the Current Biology team classifies as Northern India, specifically Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh." - Maitani
Europe invents the Gypsies - article by Klaus-Michael Bogdal on Eurozine http://www.eurozine.com/article... - Maitani