Saturday, December 01, 2012

The Roma - III

A previous paper on Roma found maternal lineages originating from north-west of India. A new paper is now reporting that even their paternal lineages could be traced to the same location[1]. Their main lineage H1a1a has haplotype matches with a nomadic tribe, Doma, hailing from that region. They reconcile their linguistic and folk origins which puts them in the Gangetic belt (Central Indo-Aryan) by noting Doma's spread from north-west to eastern India.

Of course, there is the Gyaneshwar Chaubey(one of the authors in the study) special in the study:
Scheduled castes and Scheduled tribes are the endogamous groups in India that are given a special status by the Government of India to uplift their social status (for more details, refer [47]). Historically, the assimilation of so-called tribals into the caste system generally did little to ameliorate the socio-economic barriers or enhance the marriageability of former outcastes to members of the middle or high castes.
Let's analyze those sentences.
1. This is a research paper. Do you introduce a group as something that has been given special status? That should be the last sentence in a long essay. I suppose an introduction to untouchability and isolated non-mainstream groups in India would have been in order.

2. In the second sentence, the use of the word 'assimilation' gives a positive spin to what in reality a 'name calling' and exclusion of groups. The word assimilation in fact puts the onus of the failure directly at their doorstep.

3. Basically, those two sentences are some kind of observation and not really neutral definition or introduction thus a complete absurdity in a research paper.

1. The Phylogeography of Y-Chromosome Haplogroup H1a1a-M82 Reveals the Likely Indian Origin of the European Romani Populations - Niraj Rai et al. (2012)

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