Identity, genealogy, DNA

If attachment to one’s cultural heritage can contribute to the definition of a personal identity, unconditional allegiance to any religion, voluntary submission to arbitrary traditions, the deadly pursuit of conformity to a norm, and blind identification with an ethnically pure but largely fantastical group are the starting points for the worst forms of identity extremism. Knowing where you come from to understand where you are going, yes. However, when the tyranny of one’s origin leads to a cult of the past, community isolation, and sectarian fanaticism, this obsessive focus on identity becomes a destructive process that can only result in self-annihilation through the annihilation of others.

To borrow a phrase from Georges Brassens, it is the moral duty of the humorist to mock « the blissful fools who were born somewhere. »

Today, the widespread availability of new genetic ancestry analysis technologies to the public can provide material for many comedies, especially when these DNA tests reveal unexpected connections.


Family Tree