juliana-paes-marcio-garcia-caminho-das-indias

Não é de hoje que elas curtem um dalit

No Genetic Expression, resenha de um novo trabalho sobre genética populacional humana, com foco nas populações do sul da Ásia:

(…)What is new to these data are the relationships of caste populations in Southern India. The non-Brahmin groups are Dalits, Untouchables, while the Irula are an ancient South Indian tribal population. Social historians often assert than the difference between Untouchables and tribals is a temporal one, insofar as the former are ex-tribals who have been integrated in a marginal manner into the mainstream Hindu South Asian culture, while the latter remain outside of it. The Brahmins in South India have historical memory of migration from the north of India. Physically Tamil Brahmins do seem to be different from the general population of Tamil Nadu, with a higher frequency of individuals who exhibit a phenotype more common in northern India. These data confirm previous results which show that caste stratification has a genetic reality. On the other hand they also support our intuition that there is a great deal of similarity between the South Asian groups. The Brahmins of South India have a much larger proportion of ancestry assigned to the “European”* cluster than Dalits. In fact, the Brahmin with the lowest proportion of that ancestral proportion has a higher fraction than the Dalit with the highest proportion. But the Dalits do have some of the European ancestry, while the tribals have very little. Going back to the previous model of assimilation of tribals into the Indian social structure as Dalits, after the point of integration small amounts of intermarriage would easily result in this sort of gene flow. Though the rough correlation between genetic and social structure exists, there’s obviously been gene flow (e.g., Namboodiri Sambandham being a relatively recent instantiation of formalized intercaste relations), and there is also record of communities going into “uplift” in terms of caste status in the recent past, while other groups have legends of decline. Most of the legends are no doubt myths whose role is to concoct an auspicious origin for a particular group, but certainly there were likely high status individuals and groups who fell from power and eminence.

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