Abraham's Children: Race, Identity, and the DNA of the Chosen People

Abraham's Children: Race, Identity, and the DNA of the Chosen People

Jon Entine

Language: English

Pages: 432

ISBN: 0446580635

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Could our sense of who we are really turn on a sliver of DNA? In our multiethnic world, questions of individual identity are becoming increasingly unclear. Now in ABRAHAM'S CHILDREN bestselling author Jon Entine vividly brings to life the profound human implications of the Age of Genetics while illuminating one of today's most controversial topics: the connection between genetics and who we are, and specifically the question "Who is a Jew?"

Entine weaves a fascinating narrative, using breakthroughs in genetic genealogy to reconstruct the Jewish biblical tradition of the chosen people and the hereditary Israelite priestly caste of Cohanim. Synagogues in the mountains of India and China and Catholic churches with a Jewish identity in New Mexico and Colorado provide different patterns of connection within the tangled history of the Jewish diaspora. Legendary accounts of the Hebrew lineage of Ethiopian tribesmen, the building of Africa's Great Zimbabwe fortress, and even the so-called Lost Tribes are reexamined in light of advanced DNA technology. Entine also reveals the shared ancestry of Israelites and Christians.

As people from across the world discover their Israelite roots, their riveting stories unveil exciting new approaches to defining one's identity. Not least, Entine addresses possible connections between DNA and Jewish intelligence and the controversial notion that Jews are a "race apart." ABRAHAM'S CHILDREN is a compelling reinterpretation of biblical history and a challenging and exciting illustration of the promise and power of genetic research.

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diagnosed annually; tens of thousands more women are victimized by ovarian cancer. When she embarked on what many told her was a quixotic effort, no one was sure what mix of genetic and environmental factors might cause female cancers. In those days, it was considered a long shot that genetic patterns would even be identified in families with a history of one of these killer diseases. It would be a few years before scientists would finally be able to demonstrate that defective genes gone haywire

Guard. By morning, a mob of fifteen thousand whites marched on the Greenwood District, also known as Little Africa. They used machine guns and dropped nitroglycerin in an all-out attack, killing, looting, and burning everything in sight. Martial law was decreed as the National Guard took control of policing the city. Eventually more than 6,000 rioters were apprehended. The destruction was staggering: 300 dead; 1,200 homes destroyed; 10,000 blacks left homeless. By the end of that year, the Ku

complementary in our views of how to do genetic history.” Like Hammer, Goldstein was raised as a secular Reform Jew. “I was never very religious. But as far back as high school, the history of the Jews has been of particular interest to me. It is a striking history, and it touches on all of the big features of Western culture.” Early in his career, he had actually mused about doing a project on the genetics of Jews, but he never pursued it because he didn’t think he would find much of interest

of every cell. If stretched out, the DNA in each human chromosome would extend an inch or more, but it is compacted into a microscopic bolus of only 0.001 inch. Each cell has a full set of DNA instructions. So, for instance, a hair cell also has the genetic information on how to make teeth or eyes, but those sections of the DNA are shut down in that particular cell. It’s why crime scene investigators can take a sample of DNA from any part of the body and get a distinct signature of that

later known as Bar-Kochba (Son of the Star). He was a charismatic Jewish fundamentalist who, like Jesus, claimed he was a messiah. He viewed the revolt not as a religious struggle but as a race war, a desperate attempt to preserve the Jewish people and the concept of chosenness. Understandably, most Jewish Christians and nonbelievers refused to join the revolt. Hadrian got military support from Antiochus Sidetes, the Seleucid ruler in Syria, who concluded that Jerusalem “should be destroyed and

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