DNA research seems to be turning the prescribed views of history on its head, unlocking the human building blocks of genetic history is proving challenging, the results are indeed curious as much as they are wonderous, are we who we have been told we are? Does our national or racial history reflect our DNA? If not, then who and how have we been sold the lie of identity and race from?
I am given naturally to being a sceptic towards much in life and I find myself questioning these things a great deal, i am not so readily able to give acceptance to every thing that is presented to me, i am indeed very untrusting these days, just because a doctor says something is good for you does not necessarily mean it is, many good people have taken medicine under misdirection, misdiagnosis and deficient drug quality, people have been sick and even died due to such, how does this relate to DNA findings? Well, i will add to this a little later, but firstly “just because some thinks something doesn’t mean it is, evidence needs to be presented and DNA is proving evidential!
Though is this evidence being used properly, do our geneticists properly interpret and handle our most sacred of human make up? The positives to DNA research are equal to its potential for abuse and misuse, we have been sold the amazing facts on DNA and its implications, how DNA research can unlock great possibilities, medical advantages, potential eradication of genetic and hereditary diseases, increased effectiveness in law enforcement from DNA swapping of criminals and crime scene investigations, to the general betterment of humanity at large. Though, these advantages can be equally negative, where our trust towards that may store our DNA maybe in vain, that unconscionable acts and experiments conducted without the DNA owners awareness is carried out, how can our DNA be manipulated, misused etc, i admit I am not knowledgable enough in this things, though one thing is clear like in most things, we are too trusting.
Over the weekend I watched a documentary series called BLOOD OF THE VIKINGS, from a young age my father told me that my Scottish identity is filled largely with Norwegian blood, that blood comes from the complements of the Vikings, the Vikings had successfully carried out acts of genocide against the indigenous Picts of Shetland and Orkney, virtual annihilation of the entire populations of these islands took place, from there they coducted raids and traded down the western isles of Scotland into Dublin itself (Ireland), there attrocities, warfare, craftmanship and culture became blatantly obvious to all that ran afoul of them and in many cases, what began to be apparent was that they were no longer just passing through, in may ports they now intended to stay, hence over a thousand years later many people, whether Irish, Scottish or English contain the Blood of Vikings, DNA research is providing more links to a united kingdom that is not solely politically reasoned but genetically based, oh how the skin must crawl for many at the thought of such a thing! Though, let not our biases deny the truth of the matter, but yet seek a deeper truth to be reckoned with!
The television series was presented by Julian Richards, a British television and radio presenter, writer and archaeologist, throughout the series he is presented as an enthusiastic and honest Viking-o-file, his calm and friendly manner makes him trusting and inviting, snippets of his own life where he drops his child to school make him a normal trusting man indeed. Though, i question not the DNA findings he reveals towards the end, but more so the manner in which it is presented. The Blood of the Vikings is a far more superior production then other documentries on the vikings, however to their own admission they only looked at the Y chromosons of the DNA, where as the individuals that were tested may have more information yet to be unlocked and therefore more conclusive findings are tobe found? The way in which the information was shared i found misleading as well, virtually no difference between Scots and English were presented, as it was shown that all share Dane, Angle and Saxon blood, whilst this stands as true, Julian Richards did not attempt share traces of DNA linking Scots to the Picts and Dalriadic Irish ancestors within the series, such research work that had been carried out by Dr James Wilson, a native himself of Orkney, who conducted the DNA swabs of those that contributed to the rsearch in Orkney and Shetland in BLOOD OF THE VIKINGS.
It was Dr James Wilson’s work at the “University of Oxford where his initial studies with Prof David Goldstein led to the identification of the first genetic signatures of Norse Viking ancestry in the British Isles. He also discovered the “Atlantic Modal Haplotype”, which links the ancient peoples of Britain to the Basque people of northern Spain.” What the Blood of Vikings tries to infer is that no other DNA exists today in the people of Britian beyond those Nordic and Saxon markerspresented, this is clearly not the case then, Dr Wilson’s work reveals the deeper strains of genetic’s linking Britons through the “Atlantic Modal Haplotype” giving us a great deal of connection to Spain and the Portugese. Celtic blood is not a reality, for being Celtic was never a racial experience but a shared cultural expression through art, customs and religion for most of Western Europe, where knew research is concluding the possibility that the culture of celtic Britons make of travelled from Britian to parts of western Europe, more research will reveal these things, for someties the travels of culture can head in opposite directions to its racial markers. I could not help but think that Blood of the Vikings, in a time when Scots are seeking national independence, certain sentiments within the series sought to bind the north to the south of Britain, though whilst there may be some ties that bind the two, culturally they are diverse and different!
The findings of Blood of the Vikings negates other strands of DNA and simplifies a perspective of interconnectness through the Vikings. Orkney and Shetlands were over came in the strongest of ways under marauding Vikings, though can we say that the whole of Britain was overcome in the same manner by the Saxons, Danes and Angles supressing the earlier blood lines of Britons?
To be continued?