More reflection is needed on the missing persons DNA program and what it means for the state surveillance and management of Indigenous people.
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In this episode of Sparks, FiveThirtyEight’s monthly science podcast that runs in the What’s The Point feed, the science team discusses DNA and genetic genealogy through the lens of Alondra Nelson’s book “The Social Life of DNA: Race, reparations, and reconciliation after the genome.” Nelson examines the experiences of African-American “root-seekers,” who explore their [...]
This week we take a closer look at the intersection of genetics, politics, identity, and hundreds of years of colonization. We speak with Kim TallBear, Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Peoples Technoscience and Environment and Associate Professor in the Faculty of Native Studies at the University of Alberta, about her book "Native American DNA: [...]
So you send your DNA off to an ancestry company, and get a report back that says you're part Native American, or part Italian, or part Nigerian. So what? Maybe you're excited to learn about your roots, but can you really consider yourself part of that culture? Not really, says Kim TallBear. "We [...]
For a fee, you can fill out an application, swab your cheek and find out if you have Native ancestry. Dozens of online services perform this service for hundreds of curious people. But does the result mean you can finally declare your Cherokee heritage? What do online DNA kits really tell us about Native ancestry? [...]
Scott Brown, the former Massachusetts senator who lost to Elizabeth Warren in the 2012 election, has decided to dredge up old accusations that may have ultimately cost him that race. “As you know, she’s not Native American,” Brown told reporters this week. “She’s not 1/32 Cherokee.” He then called on Harvard University, where Warren [...]
In July 1996, two college students were wading in the shallows of the Columbia River near the town of Kennewick, Wash., when they stumbled across a human skull. At first the police treated the case as a possible murder. But once a nearly complete skeleton emerged from the riverbed and was examined, it became clear [...]
Click to read In the 13 February 2014 issue of The New Scientist Linda Geddes published an interview with me: DNA testing is changing how Native Americans think about tribal membership. Yet anthropologist Kim Tallbear warns that genetic tests are a blunt tool. She tells Linda Geddes why tribal identity is not just a [...]