Tuesday, January 5, 2010

275. The Baseline Scenarios -- 51: The Event

According to the hypothesis I’ve been considering, the gap we see in the current distribution of P/B-related vocal and instrumental traditions, reinforced by what appears to be a somewhat similar distribution of visual art traditions, and – possibly -- a similar distribution of tone languages (which may or may not be relevant – more research is needed), predicts the occurrence of a disastrous event centered in South Asia at some time in the early history of the Out of Africa migration, shortly after the initial crossing into Asia, but only after colonies had been established east of India. To test this hypothesis, I will consider the genetic evidence.

Stephen Oppenheimer, whose book, The Real Eve, inspired me to get once again involved in this sort of research, does in fact see evidence for exactly this sort of event in the eruption of Mt. Toba, which would have precipitated a “nuclear winter” in South Asia that could have been devastating for any humans living in the area:

Even today, a metres-thick ash layer is found throughout the region, and is associated in two Indian locations with Middle and Upper Paleolithic tools. An important prediction of this conjunction of tools and ash is that a deep and wide genetically sterile furrow would have split East from West; India would
eventually recover by recolonization from either side. Such a furrow does exist in the genetic map of Asia, as we shall see (my emphasis -- p. 169).
While the significance of Toba for the history of modern humans is still being debated (current evidence suggests that HMP didn’t begin its journey until well after the eruption), the genetic evidence unearthed by Oppenheimer does suggest that some sort of equally disastrous event (see previous post), centered in the same area, may well have occurred. I had a fair amount to say about Oppenheimer and his ideas in my “Echoes” essay, but this will be the first occasion I've had to present the genetic evidence he uses to support his scenario. Whether such findings can be related to Toba specifically, or some other, comparable event, is probably beside the point.

The first thing Oppenheimer notes is an apparent discrepancy in the distribution of mtDNA haplogroups M and N (which he nicknames “Manju” and “Nasreen”):

In West Eurasia there is only Nasreen; in most of East Eurasia [i.e., east of Toba] there are even mixtures of Nasreen and Manju, but on the east coast of India there is nearly all Manju. The latter is consistent with near local extinction following the Toba explosion with recovery only of Manju on the east coast.

The genetic discrepancy is paralleled by morphological and linguistic distinctions:

In Nepal, Burma and Eastern India we come across the first Mongoloid East Asian faces. These populations generally speak East Asian languages [including tone languages -- VG], contrasting strongly with their neighbors who mostly speak Indo-Aryan or Dravidian languages (my emphasis -- pp. 181-182).
Oppenheimer next proceeds to a consideration of the most important of Nasreen’s “daughters,” haplogroup R, which he dubs Rohani:

What is perhaps most interesting about the unique Indian flowerings of the Manju and Rohani clans is a hint that they represent a local recovery from the Toba disaster . . . A devastated India could have been recolonized from the west by Rohani types and from the east more by Manju types (183).

Turning to evidence from the male line, as found in the Y chromosome, Oppenheimer finds a yawning gap in the distribution of the Y haplogroup referred to as YAP (which he calls “Abel”):

A puzzling aspect of the Abel trail is the big gap in his distribution between West Eurasia and the Far East and, notably, his complete absence from India. That he was on the beachcombing trail is evident from the presence of Asian YAP in the Andaman Islands, Cambodia and Japan (my emphasis -- p. 188).
While Oppenheimer’s evidence could be considered somewhat out-of-date (his book appeared in 2003), results consistent with the mtDNA discrepancy he highlighted can be seen in a recently published paper, Phylogeographic distribution of mitochondrial DNA macrohaplogroup M in India, by Suvendu Maji, S. Krithika and T.S. Vasulu (2009), where we see a map of haplogroup M distribution very similar to the one displayed on p. 181 of Oppenheimer’s book:



Of the 13 different mainland tribal groups represented in the leftmost map, 10 are located in the Eastern and Southern portions of India and only 3 elsewhere, consistent with the distribution reported by Oppenheimer -- and reflecting, for him, the effects of a devastating ancient event, centered to the East and South of the Indian subcontinent.

29 comments:

Maju said...

The East coast of India is not documented archaeologically to have been populated, with very few exceptions. It was probably colonized in a secondary episode only.

Archaeology shows clear colonization in both MP and UP in the West coast, the Narmada-Son-Ganges riverine corridor and the Krishna river corridor. All Orissa (and other areas of the East Coast) could perfectly have been deserted for most of the Paleolithic for what I know.

I know this sounds (but is not) contradictory with a strict interpretation of the "coastal migration" hypothesis but that is only because, as I see it, the expression "tropical migration" would be much more close to the truth. Of course, we don't know of possible settlements in now sunken areas but if they did not populate the interior, they must have been few anyhow.

German Dziebel said...

"What is perhaps most interesting about the unique Indian flowerings of the Manju and Rohani clans is a hint that they represent a local recovery from the Toba disaster . . . A devastated India could have been recolonized from the west by Rohani types and from the east more by Manju types."

Just to clarify: Oppenheimer and you believe that India used to have Sub-Saharan lineages such as L0, L1, L2, etc., which were brought there as a result of a founding "southern migration." Then, Toba wiped this original African population off, and later India was re-colonized from East and West. Is this correct?

In 2007, YAP+ chromosomes were reported from Northeast India, which, in combination with their presence in the Andaman Islanders, seems to confirm their antiquity in South Asia. (Chandrasekar A et al. YAP insertion signature in South Asia. Ann Hum Biol. 2007 Sep-Oct;34(5):582-6.) I think now several labs seem to agree that YAP+ was reintroduced into Africa in the form of E lineages as a result of a "back migration." Oppenheimer suspected it even before D and DE were detected in South Asia and Tibet.

Noteworthy, India has a few East Asian mtDNA lineages (C, Z, D), as documented by Maji et al., which confirms a migration from East Asia into South Asia. And it looks like the back migration into Africa (Y-DNA E, mtDNA U6, M1) was a continuation of the recolonization of India from East Asia.

Victor, do you see any musical evidence that may suggest that monophony is North Africa is, in fact, a much earlier legacy, not recent Semitic.

Maju said...

German: the finding of minor E and D presence in India is generally interpreted as arrivals from West and East respectively, where these haplogroups are common and seem to have deep roots.

How D arrived to East Asia is an "unsolved mystery" (so to say) and will likely remain that way (founder effect, logically). However D in East Asia has deep roots in SE Asia and E in Africa has deep roots in the Sahel area, most probably Sudan. DE(xD,E) has been found in West Africa (at least two subclades in various locations) and in Tibet (two individuals). Most people involved in genetics appear to think that an African origin.

As I see it, undifferentiated DE participated in the OOA process (probably in small proportions) and found an opportunity to create a founder effect in SE/East Asia (and nowhere else), evolving locally into D in the process.

Meanwhile DE evolved into E in Africa, starring successive expansions in all directions.

YAP+ (DE) means little if it is already evolved into D and E. What is interesting is DE(xD,E) because it indicates possible origins and evolutionary history.

Maju said...

Noteworthy, India has a few East Asian mtDNA lineages (C, Z, D).

It also has some B and F (R-derived but found essentially in East Asia with a likely South to North spread again).

IMO, the very presence of some N-derived clades (incl. R), coalescent surely in the subcontinent, is also a sign of backmigration from SE Asia (where N might have coalesced) at a second moment of the Great Eurasian Expansion. I'm quite persuaded of that backmigration but having little numerical impact in South Asia as such and instead impacting more directly into West Eurasia, where those lineages are clearly dominant (specially R and N1).

German Dziebel said...

"Most people involved in genetics appear to think that an African origin."

Not really. As the paper we read on Dienekes says, "It is also interesting to sum the distributions of different haplogroups descending from the same mutation, as for example D and E, which both descend from DE-YAP, the first mutation that split into the E branch that perhaps returned to Africa (or arose there), whereas the other branch, D, is found today mainly in the Himalayas and Japan." (Y chromosome diversity, human expansion, drift, and cultural evolution, by Charoni, Underhill and C-Sforza, p. 20177).

The second author of this paper is Underhill, who originally argued for a strictly African origin of DE, contra Hammer et al. 1998 (Out of Africa and Back Again: Nested Cladistic Analysis of Human Y Chromosome). Now, as you can see, Underhill signs off on a paper that takes a back migration into Africa as the first option.

This is in addition to Chandrasekar, Shi (who dated D at 60K), Oppenheimer, who seem to consider a back migration into Sub-Saharan Africa seriously. The reason why it's not being trumpeted around is probably because people are afraid it'll open a can of worms and jeopardize the integrity of "the out-of-Africa theory of modern human origins."

DE is nested within the CF clade (when the migration of DE out of Africa was seriously considered, people didn't know that C and F are related), so it's likely migrated "back" to Africa, as neither C nor F are found in Africa.

I further believe that A and B evolved from E (because they aren't found outside of Africa), but it's just me. However, a back migration into Sub-Saharan Africa from Asia is a commonly held view deserving testing against musical evidence.

German Dziebel said...

"the finding of minor E and D presence in India is generally interpreted as arrivals from West and East respectively, where these haplogroups are common and seem to have deep roots."

You seem to be right on this. Shi writes the same thing.

DocG said...

Maju: "The East coast of India is not documented archaeologically to have been populated, with very few exceptions. It was probably colonized in a secondary episode only."

Does this mean you agree with Oppenheimer's interepretation of the M haplogroup data?

DocG said...

German: "Oppenheimer and you believe that India used to have Sub-Saharan lineages such as L0, L1, L2, etc., which were brought there as a result of a founding "southern migration." Then, Toba wiped this original African population off, and later India was re-colonized from East and West. Is this correct?"

That's an interesting theory. To mhy knowledge Oppenheimer has nothing to say on that and I haven't mentioned it either. But it IS possible that L3 was originally present in Asia and then wiped out by some drastic event, such as Toba, leaving only her "daughters" behind, why not?

As far as North Africa is concerned, this is not an area I've researched as thoroughly as SS Africa, but there ARE groups in N. Africa that probably antedate the Moslem expansion into this area, yes. And some of them sing monophonically as I recall. But I'm not sure why it's so important to you to establish monophony as indigenous to Africa. According to all the evidence I can find, the common ancestors in Africa were singing in P/B style, which is obviously polyphonic. Which means that, for me, this is the baseline and everything else is derived from that. But you already know what I think on this matter, so what are you expecting me to say that will console you?

German Dziebel said...

"But I'm not sure why it's so important to you to establish monophony as indigenous to Africa."

For a simple reason that there's ample genetic evidence for a back migration into at least North and East Africa that happened between 40 and 30K. It's M1, U6 in mtDNA and DE>E in Y-DNA. It has nothing to do with out of America, so don't be afraid. Since you're trying to map music on genes, I'm suggesting ways to reconcile the two, so at least I start seeing some similarities. So far, the presence of a Sub-Saharan polyphonic trail along the southern route has no parallels in either mtDNA or Y-DNA, as there're no ancient sub-Saharan lineages in Asia, Europe or Australia. The whole world outside of Africa must be monophonic to match the genetic evidence. But this is not the case. Also, methodologically I think you can't dismiss the multiple cases of monophony in the world as a simple loss of polyphony, and if North Africa was peopled by modern humans by 40K and Australia was peopled by 40K and Australia has monophony, it's possible that North African monophony is that old.

"But it IS possible that L3 was originally present in Asia and then wiped out by some drastic event, such as Toba, leaving only her "daughters" behind, why not?"

For my money, that's the only way to prove, from the point of view of genetics, that humans actually colonized Asia from Africa: to hypothesize the loss of African lineages outside of Africa and then find L0,L1, L2, L3, etc. either in ancient remains or in small frequencies in marginal populations. This hasn't been done so far.

"what are you expecting me to say that will console you?"

Something along the lines of "I'm happy that I finally solved the gap problem and convinced German about it."

Maju said...

Does this mean you agree with Oppenheimer's interepretation of the M haplogroup data? -

On my knowledge and in what regards to the Orissa area (roughly), I'd say that rather yes. But the southern region of India is very diverse and even in the mentioned paper there is some 25% of M that is still unclassified. So don't feel authorized to use this "agreement" as any sort of blank check in favor of Oppenheimer's hypothesis: it's just a specific area between Andrah Pradesh and Bengal which looks that way - and anyhow it might have been colonized in the second episode, more or less coincident with the expansion of R.

What I agree with is that certain areas of East India may have remained virgin or sparsely populated at least until a second moment in the Eurasian expansion at least. This would be consistent with what I know of archaeology and population genetics. But you don't need Toba to explain that: the area is out of the riverine system that has been 'demonstrated' in computer simulations to have been the likely paths of early Eurasians, paths that are essentially coincident with archaeological findings. However these simulations also suggested the coastal route, though areas now under the sea.

Early Eurasians could perfectly have reached South East Asia without touching Orissa.

DocG said...

German: "For a simple reason that there's ample genetic evidence for a back migration into at least North and East Africa that happened between 40 and 30K. It's M1, U6 in mtDNA and DE>E in Y-DNA."

Interesting. That could expain the presence of unison singing among certain groups, especially since as far as I can tell, the unison groups are mostly in East Africa. I've been working on Africa with Sarah Tishkoff's team and it will be interesting to see if such a correlation emerges. Unfortunately, however, there are many African groups in the Cantometric database that are absent from her database, so negative results at this point might not mean much.

Thanks for the suggestion though, that's definitely worth looking in to.

DocG said...

German, I've been looking over some of the papers pertaining to the back migration and I must say that the distribution of M1 in the supplementary data for "The mtDNA Legacy of the Levantine Early Upper Palaeolithic" in Africa looks very interesting, especially since it extends into regions of East Africa for which I have Cantometric samplings.

Unfortunately, the groupings included in this study are not specific enough for me to use, as the presence of unison varies from tribal group to tribal group and specific tribes aren't included, only larger groupings that aren't very helpful. Another study I've checked has the same problem.

Tishkoff's most recent paper is much more specific -- and extensive -- but it's limited to autosomal markers, with no reference to either mtDNA or Y.

:-(

If you can find a study with very specific references to specific tribal groups in North and East Africa, that would help and I'd be willing to spend some time looking for correlations.

German Dziebel said...

The main one on M1 is Gonzalez's http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1945034/#S1 but you're right, it doesn't specify the actual populations in Africa, only geographies. Mathilda has a post on it, too: http://mathildasanthropologyblog.wordpress.com/2009/01/14/the-m78-y-chromosome-and-m1-mt-dna-as-makers-for-the-expansion-of-the-halfan-culture/

Abu-Amero is good paper as well. It claims to have found a Saudi sequence related to Australian M14 in addition to M1 sequences. http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2148/8/45

Gonder et al. (2007) also name N1 and J lineages in Tanzania as ones that back-migrated from the Middle East or Eurasia in addition to M1 and U6. They mention Burunge (Afroasiatic, M1) and Datog (M1) and Maasai (Nilo-Saharan, M1), Mbugwe (Bantu, N1) in Tanzania as carriers of M1, N1 and J lineages.

I wonder if there's a clue here to the non-polyphonic Hadza?

German Dziebel said...

More: M1 is found in "Cushitic peoples" and in such Afroasiatic peoples of Ethiopia as Amhara, Gurage, Tigrais, Ethiopians (from Kivisild 2004, Ethiopian Mitochondrial DNA Heritage: Tracking Gene Flow Across and Around the Gate of Tears). Kivisild et al. associate it with the spread of Afroasiatic-speakers but suspect that it may predate them because it's very diverse in East Africa.

Maju said...

I wonder if there's a clue here to the non-polyphonic Hadza? -

Living in the middle of East Africa they must have interacted much more with other peoples than Pygmies and Bushmen. That would fit with my hypothesis of loss of P/B as "innovation" triggered by greater interactivity, which I began to consider not just because I find unlikely the Oppenheimer catastrophe scenario but also because Victor himself has pointed to the fact that in Africa south of the Sahara, P/B has also experienced a considerable disintegration, process that can't be related to Toba or any other Eurasian process.

Another possibility would be that the Afro-Eurasian population (i.e. the one at the origin of everybody but Bushmen and Pygmies) lost those traits already in Africa for a different reason, more in line with Victor's catastrophic line of thought but as far as I can discern, the type of P/B "decay" in Africa is different from that in the various regions of Eurasia (right?), so most probably not.

Abu-Amero is good paper as well. It claims to have found a Saudi sequence related to Australian M14 in addition to M1 sequences.

As in the case of the Indian-Australian supposed connection, this is a very preliminary finding. Abu Amero noticed a similitude of SNPs but did not present any clear phylogeny. The issue is pending further research.

Gonder et al. (2007) also name N1 and J lineages in Tanzania as ones that back-migrated from the Middle East or Eurasia.

I am not totally sure but I understand that these two lineages are rather believed to have arrived at a later moment. There has been more than one wave into Eastern Africa: while M1 is clearly ancient, we can't forget the expansions from the Nile (Chadic peoples carrying Y-DNA R1b* and probably related Nilotic peoples), the ill-understood Semitic migration into Ethiopia and the Indian Ocean trade routes of the last millennium (including the Austronesian colonization of Madagascar).

DocG said...

Maju: "Early Eurasians could perfectly have reached South East Asia without touching Orissa."

Yes. But if you want to claim that colonies were left along the way, and that there was no event, such as Toba or a Tsunami, flood, drought, etc., to disrupt them, then we would expect an expansion northward from the coast as their populations expanded. No reason to assume they wouldn't have expanded more or less equally in both the east and west of India, so why don't we see just as much evidence of their presence in the east as in the west?

Maju said...

No reason to assume they wouldn't have expanded more or less equally in both the east and west of India...

Yes, there are three reasons:

1. Archaeological: as I said before the MP and UP remains in India are concentrated very clearly in the West coast, Narmada-Son-Ganges route and the southern Krishna river route. Naturally we lack of data for the Paleolithic shoreline as such, which is now under the sea.

2. Topographical. Simulations have been run for the region and they clearly confirm that the purely coastal route and the riverine Narmada-Son and Krishna routes are the natural "minimal effort" routes to the East, which is coincident with archaeology. See Julie Field and Marta Mirazón2006 (pay per view).

3. Genetic (you already know about this one).

I can't find right now the references I have found in the past on the Indian archaeological distribution but you can see the GIS map (or a version of it) of Field HERE and also a Mesolithic map of India that shows the same distribution (mostly excluding central-east India) as do the Paleolithic maps of the same series.

Also found in this search that even John Hawks considers the Toba catastrophe hypothesis pretty much dead (on Petraglia 2007).

manju said...

Of the 13 different mainland tribal groups represented in the leftmost map, 10 are located in the Eastern and Southern portions of India and only 3 elsewhere, consistent with the distribution reported by Oppenheimer -- and reflecting, for him, the effects of a devastating ancient event, centered to the East and South of the Indian subcontinent.

I'm not sure I understand this point. I think you are trying to say, since most of the tribes are found in South and East these tribes survived Toba event. Sorry, if I missed something here.

Indeed there are more than thirteen tribes and some of the biggest are found in Central India and West India (Dravidian and IE). In East you mostly find Austro-Asiatic and Sino-Tibetan tribes. These are supposedly later migrants to South Asia. And also, Dravidian tribes in East are the later migrants. Even though Orissa has a very large Dravidian tribe, their language is closely related to Central Dravidian languages. It appears to be later Dravidian expansion. Also, Dravidian languages spoken Bangladesh, Nepal belong to North Dravidian languages and one of the languages that belong to that branch, Brahui, is observed in Pakistan. Again these tribes are also believed to have migrated much recent to East and North-West regions.

Majority of the IE and Dravidian tribes are found in Central and West regions(Gujarat and Rajasthan have nearly 10-12% tribal population) where they from nearly 10% of the population. In South India they may form around 4% of the population (More in Andhra Pradesh as it's close to Central Indian region, Tamil Nadu and Kerala have 1% each).

Curiously, there is a tribe (Nihali) that speaks a language isolate in West-Central India.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nihali
Some Indologists believe it may distinctly related to Ainu. If true, may be they carry YAP. Unfortunately, they have not been studied till now.

I think the point I'm trying to make here is that if you check tribal distribution, nothing survived in South and East India because of Toba event(If at all the coastal migration hypothesis is true).

German Dziebel said...

"As in the case of the Indian-Australian supposed connection, this is a very preliminary finding. Abu Amero noticed a similitude of SNPs but did not present any clear phylogeny. The issue is pending further research.

Gonder et al. (2007) also name N1 and J lineages in Tanzania as ones that back-migrated from the Middle East or Eurasia.

I am not totally sure but I understand that these two lineages are rather believed to have arrived at a later moment."

Agree on Abu Amero. I don't know if N1 and J are the same migration as M1 or a later one. M1 is very important to my theory, as it, like all other M lineages, shares a critical "10873C" state with all African L lineages, while all N lineages have a "10873T" there. As both T and C states are found outside of Africa (and, as we discussed earlier, they are found on all (sub)continents, including America, India and Australia) and only C is found in Africa, top-clade diversity is higher outside of Africa. So, all African L lineages are likely derived from M1. If macrohaplogroup N roughly corresponds to monophony and macrohaplogroup M to polyphony, then the absence of a deep N lineage in Africa, unlike a deep M lineage (M1)corresponds exactly to the paucity of monophony in Africa (although Victor claims it exists in East Africa, too, in some populations). On the other hand, the presence of P/B elements in such Afroasiatic peoples as Dorze mirrors the presence of M1 exactly in the same area of East Africa.

Maju said...

So, all African L lineages are likely derived from M1.

These kind of statements make me smile at your imagination, like a mother would smile to kid who speaks vividly about how Superman can fly or Santa's imps.

If all L(xM,N) lineages would be derived from M1, they should share the defining mutations leading to M1, i.e. those leading to M (loci 489 10400 14783 15043), those leading to M1'51 (locus 14110) and those leading to M1 itself (loci 195 6446 6680 12403 12950C 16129 16189 16249 16311).

Of course, they do not. Hence your claim is falsified.

But if what is to believe in Santa: "yes, dear, Santa lives at the North Pole" (add beatific smile).

German Dziebel said...

"If all L(xM,N) lineages would be derived from M1, they should share the defining mutations leading to M1."

First of all, I'm not talking about N. Second, why should African L lineages "share" these states with M1 to be derived from M1? They mutated away from M1 states at all these loci (C>T, T>C, A>G, etc). Only 10873 (maybe a couple more) stayed the same.
This is an example of long-branch attraction fallacy inherent in parsimony-based approaches.

Maju said...

First of all, I'm not talking about N.

For everybody but you (and, for what I have seen in Google searchers, some Stormfront members, i.e. neonazis in the Net) L(xM,N) is what you call "L". For ALL geneticists M and N are subclades of L3 and hence part of L, so if you want to talk of "African L" you have to use that notation.

Second, why should African L lineages "share" these states with M1 to be derived from M1?.

Because if they are to hang from the M1 node they need to share those mutations: it's a basic principle of phylogenetics that you seem to simply not understand (or not wanting to see or whatever).

Only 10873 (maybe a couple more) stayed the same.

Sorry but most mutations don't back-mutate. They simply do not have time to do it.

This is an example of long-branch attraction fallacy inherent in parsimony-based approaches.

This is just your fallacious ex-post-facto self-complacent meaningless sentence.

Haploid phylogenetics do not rely on what you say: they are based on sets and subsets. There are very long branches like Y-DNA P which nevertheless do not attract any other lineage. They just cannot because the potential mutations are of a much larger order than the real ones. If you still think this is possible in the somewhat smaller mtDNA ring, then use the Y-DNA to be safe, because the Y chromosome is huge in comparison.

Tiresome...

German Dziebel said...

"Because if they are to hang from the M1 node they need to share those mutations: it's a basic principle of phylogenetics that you seem to simply not understand (or not wanting to see or whatever)."

Over to you: the basic principle of phylogenetics is separating common descent from innovation. I suppose the best way to clarify the confusion is that there's no such thing as a "set" in genetics: every population is already diverse and subdivided along kinship lines from the start. There are states identical by descent and then there are mutations; sometimes these mutations result in homoplasies or back mutations. But geneticists want all lineages to coalesce. They never do in reality.

10873C on L and on M1 are a retention, a pair of alleles sharing "identity by descent." That's the only (or one of the few mutations) that are shared between African L and non-African M populations. Outside of Africa, however, you can find tons of lineages with 10873T. They are called N lineages. They are not found in Africa (until U6 comes in). It means that, at some point in time, 10873 changed state from T to C or from C to T. But it couldn't have taken place in Africa, as there no 10873T lineages there. What we see in Africa is a bottleneck (only one lineage M1 apparently entered Africa), with subsequent re-expansion. A lot of new mutations appeared in situ after the bottleneck.

"Sorry but most mutations don't back-mutate. They simply do not have time to do it."

But they have all the speed to do so. When we have to choose between deriving 140 language stocks in America within 12K years and hypothesizing accelerated mutation rate in Africa (this option was around since Johnson et al. 1983) for some neutral genes, something gotta give. And it's the genes with their point(less) mutations, not complex systems such as languages.

"For ALL geneticists M and N are subclades of L3 and hence part of L, so if you want to talk of "African L" you have to use that notation."

Geneticists are wrong. They are misled by the parsimony method, confused by the biblical story of the common descent of all humans from a single couple, and spoiled by some easy grants. Phylogeography makes it very likely, as there're no African L lineages outside of Africa, which means they arose in situ. At the same time, one out of dozens M lineages in the world is found in Africa.

"For everybody but you (and, for what I have seen in Google searchers, some Stormfront members, i.e. neonazis in the Net)."

That's an example of a set fallacy. Two entirely unrelated entities are lumped together because they sound the same.

"This is an example of long-branch attraction fallacy inherent in parsimony-based approaches.

This is just your fallacious ex-post-facto self-complacent meaningless sentence."

Yeah, I should've put this sentence earlier but the point remains. See an explanation for what long-branch attraction is here. http://research.amnh.org/~siddall/methods/ml.html

DocG said...

Hi Manju. I almost confused you with Maju, so I'm glad you posted a picture.

"I'm not sure I understand this point. I think you are trying to say, since most of the tribes are found in South and East these tribes survived Toba event. Sorry, if I missed something here."

My point is that the distribution on the map is very similar to one we see in a map in Oppenheimer's book, of 2003, which tends to confirm his findings. His point is that we see a combination of M and N in West and Central India and also Eastern Asia, but in and around the East coast of India we see only M and very little N. He sees this as evidence of the Toba explosion, which could have wiped out the original population of East India, followed by an immigration into that area at a later time from some M group or groups from East Asia.

This seems consistent with the archaeological evidence which both you and Maju have provided. If there had been no eruption, or possibly some other disaster, in this region, we would expect both the west and the east of India to now be inhabited equally by both M and N.

Thanks for all this information, Manju, it's very interesting.

DocG said...

German: "On the other hand, the presence of P/B elements in such Afroasiatic peoples as Dorze mirrors the presence of M1 exactly in the same area of East Africa."

But as far as I can tell, and I must say I find this very interesting, M1 seems associated almost exclusively with monophonic singers. I guess the Dorze are an exception.

German Dziebel said...

"But as far as I can tell, and I must say I find this very interesting, M1 seems associated almost exclusively with monophonic singers. I guess the Dorze are an exception."

I've just thrown it out there, I don't know. Something to think about. From what you're saying I can tell that East Africa is an area where polyphony of P/B variety of Hadza variety as well as monophony are found interspersed. The area of East Africa where non-P/B polyphony (and I don't know if I'm expressing it correctly) is found (either Dorze or Hadza) is exactly where M1 is found. The Hadza don't have M1 as far as it's been reported. We don't know if the Dorze have it, but the overall area is right, plus M1 is common in Afroasiatic speakers, and Omotic is a branch thereof. East Africa is also the area where all African language families (well, until the recent revisions of the classification) are found, which may suggest an early diversification. From the kinship perspective, East Africa is interesting because it has moieties (Omotic, Cushitic, Nilo-Saharan), and some polyphonic traditions in Melanesia and South America seem to be embedded in the moiety structures. This is very logical because these societies are divided into alternating halves, and polyphonic singing involves an alternation of melodies.

May be it's just a random list of curia from East Africa.

DocG said...

German: "This is very logical because these societies are divided into alternating halves, and polyphonic singing involves an alternation of melodies."

There are some societies in Polynesia where two groups sing different music simultaneously and it's possible that these are competing moieties, but I can't recall if that's the case. In the vast majority of cases there is no evidence of an association between polyphony and moieties. There are certainly no moieties among the Pygmies and Bushmen.

German Dziebel said...

"There are some societies in Polynesia where two groups sing different music simultaneously and it's possible that these are competing moieties, but I can't recall if that's the case. In the vast majority of cases there is no evidence of an association between polyphony and moieties. There are certainly no moieties among the Pygmies and Bushmen."

There's definitely a division of polyphonic ensembles into moieties. This is attested in the Andes and in Papua New Guinea. I also came across a factoid that, among Dorze, one moiety sings back to the other at the funerals. It's common for moiety societies to have funerary alternations of different sort (say, only the members of moiety A can wash off the body of the dead member of moiety B, etc.), so there's something here. The fact that Pygmy and Bushmen don't have moieties and correspondingly their ensembles aren't associated with polyphony may suggest their derived nature in contrast to the PNG, Dorze and South American polyphonic "cultures."

German Dziebel said...

This is what I found about the Omotic-speaking Maale (I communicated it to you on August 27 in a comment to your post):

"In parts of South Ethiopia, among Omotic speakers such as Dorze and Maale, social organization is based on dual divisions into moieties. In this part of Africa, as well as elswhere in the world, where moieties are found, the moieties are interlocked into a complicated system of exchange. For instance, one moiety buries the members of the other moiety after they die. A religious and musical expression of this reciprocity is the pattern by which the leader of one moiety starts a song or a prayer, while the leader of the other moiety finishes it."

This is pretty close to the co-existence of two melodic lines in a polyphonic style of music. Since in PNG and South America, the ensembles are divided between the two moieties, we seem to have a pattern, apparently a very old pattern that's missing from P/B.