I took a second 23andMe DNA test for someone’s research study, and now whenever I log in to either account the site really wants me to connect with my identical twin!

Interestingly, “my twin” has .6% North African ancestry on the “speculative” setting, whereas “I” only have .1% on the same setting. That’s through my father’s side (I deduce, because it’s not through my mother’s).

Through my mom’s side, a teeny bit of Oceanian ancestry, less than .1%, showed up in my map recently. The second account does not have this.

koreamjournal
koreamjournal:


A Korean name can provide its bearer with a link to ancestors going back thousands of years…. Each Korean name contains a wealth of history that links an individual to ancestors thousands of years in the past. I notice that even today these honored genealogies, catalogued in a book called the jokbo, continue to poke their way into the life of nearly every Korean.
Yet although nearly every Korean family is proud of this book and talks of this book, when I ask, “Do you know what’s in it?” they shake their heads.

 Read more at iamkoream.com.

koreamjournal:

A Korean name can provide its bearer with a link to ancestors going back thousands of years…. Each Korean name contains a wealth of history that links an individual to ancestors thousands of years in the past. I notice that even today these honored genealogies, catalogued in a book called the jokbo, continue to poke their way into the life of nearly every Korean.

Yet although nearly every Korean family is proud of this book and talks of this book, when I ask, “Do you know what’s in it?” they shake their heads.

 Read more at iamkoream.com.

orphanblack

orphanblack:

Meet Cosima Herter, Orphan Black science consultant and the real inspiration for clone Cosima!

"Real Cosima helps us with the science and the larger picture of where the science fits into society…" - Graeme Manson 

From a  Q&A with Herter: “I see how the science of biology, almost more than any other science, is marshalled into the service of politics…. And, the conception of this show, right down to the characters, the fact that you have a main female character multiple times over! Women are often, throughout history reduced to their biology. And marginalized because of that biology.”

yaleuniversity
yaleuniversity:

On view at the Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, a new exhibition exploring an American family’s ties to the German dynasty that ruled from the modern age to the end of WW1.
The Hohenzollern-Schlaberg-Hughes Collection at Yale features artwork, maps, books, and correspondence. 

“The collection was gifted to Yale in 2011 by Thomas Lowe Hughes, who discovered it hidden away in his grandfather’s attic…”

yaleuniversity:

On view at the Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, a new exhibition exploring an American family’s ties to the German dynasty that ruled from the modern age to the end of WW1.

The Hohenzollern-Schlaberg-Hughes Collection at Yale features artwork, maps, books, and correspondence. 

The collection was gifted to Yale in 2011 by Thomas Lowe Hughes, who discovered it hidden away in his grandfather’s attic…”

The Kings and Queens of Scotland from King Fergus to King George III, according to a late eighteenth-century genealogist. 
According to the Scottish Archive for Schools, this is a central section of a Scottish royalty family tree “created in 1792 by John Brown, a genealogist,” and “designed in the form of an oak and decorated with heraldic crests and crowns…. Details about each person are given in separate circles spread across the branches.”

The Kings and Queens of Scotland from King Fergus to King George III, according to a late eighteenth-century genealogist.

According to the Scottish Archive for Schools, this is a central section of a Scottish royalty family tree “created in 1792 by John Brown, a genealogist,” and “designed in the form of an oak and decorated with heraldic crests and crowns…. Details about each person are given in separate circles spread across the branches.”

With 23and­Me, she wants to do with DNA what Google did for data—because, after all, DNA is data. Want to compare huge numbers of people with hereditary Parkinson’s disease against people who carry a gene for Parkinson’s but are healthy? Here’s a database of millions: All a researcher needs to do is create the algorithm. Want to look at genetic variances among people with very complex diseases, like diabetes, or Alzheimer’s, or coronary-artery disease? 23andMe can isolate disease groups and scrutinize the genotypes within them. Want to figure out why a tiny number of folks taking a certain multiple-sclerosis drug also get blood clots? Cull the patients from the database, email them a questionnaire, and compare answers. And then there are those connections algorithms might make between genes and health that humans hadn’t even thought to ask about. These results might efficiently steer scientists toward especially promising targets for research, and the resulting discoveries—drugs, surgical procedures, nutritional information, eyeglasses, sunscreen—might then be marketed back to individuals who 23andMe already knows are predisposed to osteo­arthritis or hereditary blindness or melanoma. It’s a vision of seamless scientific research that is also a business—like, say, Google—tempting you with products the data engine has already discerned you need.

23andMe collects that genetic information from individuals with a sleight of hand so quintessentially American that Tom Sawyer might have dreamed it up: It sells it to them. The first human genome was sequenced in 2003, after more than a decade of work and at a cost to taxpayers of $2.7 billion. But, over the next decade, the price of a gene-squencing chip plummeted while its capacity exponentially increased, and that chip is now the magical head of a pin on which a whole medical revolution could turn. By last fall, 23andMe could deploy genotyping technology to produce a personalized genetic report on more than 200 health conditions within three weeks for just $99—no prescription necessary. Customers spit into a tube in the privacy of their own homes, send the saliva sample to a lab, then wait for results, which arrive by email. The report gives users detailed ancestry information, the probabilities of their getting dozens of complex diseases, and their responsiveness to 25 drug therapies. It tells customers whether they have the BRCA1 mutations, which are associated with dramatically higher incidence of breast cancer, and whether they carry the genetic variant that corresponds to cystic fibrosis. It also provides party fodder: Do you smell asparagus in your pee? Are you prone to be addicted to nicotine or wired to run the 100-meter dash? To access all this tantalizing information, users have to agree to allow 23andMe to profit from their genetic data. “By providing any sample,” the terms of service read, “you acquire no rights in any research or commercial products that may be developed by 23and­Me or its collaborating partners.”

Lisa Miller’s “The Google of Spit,” on Anne Wojcicki’s vision for 23andme. 
"I know that it is possible to consider history wholly in the context of ideas—the rise of this abstraction, the pressure exerted by that—because people do. And are impatient and even enraged if you suggest that human personality enters into it. But that isn’t the way my mind works. I have to get out an imaginary telescope and fiddle with the lens until I see something that interests me, preferably something small and unimportant.… If the telescope is focused properly, ideas are caught in it as well as people." — William Maxwell, Ancestors

"I know that it is possible to consider history wholly in the context of ideas—the rise of this abstraction, the pressure exerted by that—because people do. And are impatient and even enraged if you suggest that human personality enters into it. But that isn’t the way my mind works. I have to get out an imaginary telescope and fiddle with the lens until I see something that interests me, preferably something small and unimportant.… If the telescope is focused properly, ideas are caught in it as well as people." — William Maxwell, Ancestors

I’m excited about scottcheshire's High as the Horses’ Bridles, a novel about about inheritance, religious and otherwise, which centers on a lapsed child prophet and preacher and his reckoning, later in life, with his sick father. The title comes from the Book of Revelation, which, Cheshire says, “looms large for me, always has since childhood.” (I can relate.) Victor LaValle calls the novel “tender and enlightening, riveting and raw.” 
In advance of the book’s publication tomorrow, Cheshire writes below about his own remarkable grandfather, Thomas Kirkwood, pictured above in Hoboken, in 1928.

My grandfather, in front of a merchant vessel, leans against a pier railing, looking like he owns the place, cooler and more assured (it seems) in this frozen moment than I have appeared in all my forty-one years. By the time this photo is taken he’d already sailed as a U.S. Merchant Marine for sixty-five merchant lines, on seventy-five ships. He’d seen the world and brought home keepsakes from Egypt, and India, from countless countries throughout Europe and Africa. He’d stowed away, and evaded ship police, from Copenhagen all the way to Hamburg—and wrote about it. He’d survived malaria, German ocean mine explosions during World War I, and spent three months marooned on an empty island after his ship was torn in half by a typhoon. 
I never did meet him, though. I know all this because my mother found his sea journal, after it’d been hid in a box for seventy-five years. The pages are faded, all in pencil, and mostly in Spanish (he was Chilean born), except for poems and song lyrics like this one, seen here, typed in an affably shaggy English, his second language. My mother made this totem for me: nine unashamedly simple and lovely typewritten lines on a note card—“When you wake up in the morn/ be a little optimistic”—along with a handsome photo of him at the time. She knew I would appreciate knowing this sort of thing was in my blood, a love for adventure, and the impulse to make art. 
There is something to that, the romantic idea that something besides DNA lives on in the blood. And maybe it does. From him, I certainly got my height, my coloring, and my hair. I got other things from my dad’s dad, and from my dad, surely. Not to mention from my mother, and my grandmothers, plus all who came before them. 
Anyway, I keep these nine typed lines and this picture in my writing bag, flat between the pages of a book. Always. And when I write, I take it out and set it on the desk beside me, a sort of ritual, I guess, or nod of respect, to hopefully invoke his spirit. 
I have not traveled the globe. Not yet, anyway. I have not been to war. But I do write stories. I write to figure out my place in the world. I even wrote a novel, a book all about family legacy, what invisible longings we pass on in the blood, about understanding where you come from is exactly who you are. Plus there happens to be an old photo in the book, the sepia ghost of another long gone grandfather. My small way to honor his memory, and whatever part my grandfather played in the making of the novel. Not to mention, his advice is good. Whenever I find myself stuck, with nothing but my A.M. coffee and the whiteness of the page, I read: “So just follow this advise/ When you wake up in the morn/ be a little optimistic.”  

Simple? Yeah, sure. But where on earth did he write this? In the belly of a rocking ship, and deathly sick with fever? Amidst enemy shelling at sea? Or maybe he composed these lines in his head, while shipwrecked, and skirting sharks, subsisting on found coffee grounds and sugar. No matter what, I’ll take his word for it. I’ll take him everywhere I go. I’ll take him everywhere the white page takes me. — scottcheshire

I’m excited about scottcheshire's High as the Horses’ Bridles, a novel about about inheritance, religious and otherwise, which centers on a lapsed child prophet and preacher and his reckoning, later in life, with his sick father. The title comes from the Book of Revelation, which, Cheshire says, “looms large for me, always has since childhood.” (I can relate.) Victor LaValle calls the novel “tender and enlightening, riveting and raw.”

In advance of the book’s publication tomorrow, Cheshire writes below about his own remarkable grandfather, Thomas Kirkwood, pictured above in Hoboken, in 1928.

My grandfather, in front of a merchant vessel, leans against a pier railing, looking like he owns the place, cooler and more assured (it seems) in this frozen moment than I have appeared in all my forty-one years. By the time this photo is taken he’d already sailed as a U.S. Merchant Marine for sixty-five merchant lines, on seventy-five ships. He’d seen the world and brought home keepsakes from Egypt, and India, from countless countries throughout Europe and Africa. He’d stowed away, and evaded ship police, from Copenhagen all the way to Hamburg—and wrote about it. He’d survived malaria, German ocean mine explosions during World War I, and spent three months marooned on an empty island after his ship was torn in half by a typhoon. 

I never did meet him, though. I know all this because my mother found his sea journal, after it’d been hid in a box for seventy-five years. The pages are faded, all in pencil, and mostly in Spanish (he was Chilean born), except for poems and song lyrics like this one, seen here, typed in an affably shaggy English, his second language. My mother made this totem for me: nine unashamedly simple and lovely typewritten lines on a note card—“When you wake up in the morn/ be a little optimistic”—along with a handsome photo of him at the time. She knew I would appreciate knowing this sort of thing was in my blood, a love for adventure, and the impulse to make art. 

There is something to that, the romantic idea that something besides DNA lives on in the blood. And maybe it does. From him, I certainly got my height, my coloring, and my hair. I got other things from my dad’s dad, and from my dad, surely. Not to mention from my mother, and my grandmothers, plus all who came before them. 

Anyway, I keep these nine typed lines and this picture in my writing bag, flat between the pages of a book. Always. And when I write, I take it out and set it on the desk beside me, a sort of ritual, I guess, or nod of respect, to hopefully invoke his spirit. 

I have not traveled the globe. Not yet, anyway. I have not been to war. But I do write stories. I write to figure out my place in the world. I even wrote a novel, a book all about family legacy, what invisible longings we pass on in the blood, about understanding where you come from is exactly who you are. Plus there happens to be an old photo in the book, the sepia ghost of another long gone grandfather. My small way to honor his memory, and whatever part my grandfather played in the making of the novel. Not to mention, his advice is good. Whenever I find myself stuck, with nothing but my A.M. coffee and the whiteness of the page, I read: “So just follow this advise/ When you wake up in the morn/ be a little optimistic.”  

Simple? Yeah, sure. But where on earth did he write this? In the belly of a rocking ship, and deathly sick with fever? Amidst enemy shelling at sea? Or maybe he composed these lines in his head, while shipwrecked, and skirting sharks, subsisting on found coffee grounds and sugar. No matter what, I’ll take his word for it. I’ll take him everywhere I go. I’ll take him everywhere the white page takes me.scottcheshire

In A Cultural History of Heredity, Staffan Müller-Wille and Hans-Jörg Rheinberger note that early Western psychiatrists “promoted the idea that psychic and mental diseases could be attributed to a hereditary disposition (called diathesis) and that the unimpeded spread of these conditions would cause sweeping degeneration.” Sterilization was a common preventative measure.
The book includes this “family pedigree” for “The Near Blood-Kin of a Feebleminded Woman Sterilized by the State of California.”
Elsewhere scholars have emphasized “California’s role in the Nazis’ goal of ‘purification.’” And I posted previously about some of Joan Didion’s thoughts on California’s asylums. 

In A Cultural History of Heredity, Staffan Müller-Wille and Hans-Jörg Rheinberger note that early Western psychiatrists “promoted the idea that psychic and mental diseases could be attributed to a hereditary disposition (called diathesis) and that the unimpeded spread of these conditions would cause sweeping degeneration.” Sterilization was a common preventative measure.

The book includes this “family pedigree” for “The Near Blood-Kin of a Feebleminded Woman Sterilized by the State of California.”

Elsewhere scholars have emphasized “California’s role in the Nazis’ goal of ‘purification.’” And I posted previously about some of Joan Didion’s thoughts on California’s asylums