Dr. David Eltis Comments on DNA Analysis of African Roots

David Eltis, Robert W. Woodruff Professor of History, was cited in a CBS News article, “DNA analysis traces African slaves back to their roots.” Here is an excerpt of Eltis’ commentary:

“David Eltis, an expert on the Atlantic slave trade from Emory University who did not take part in the study, called the findings ‘promising research with enormous potential for tracking the location of Africans brought to the Americas.’

‘This approach, along with identification of African names, are ways of getting around the thin documentary record for pre-orthographic African societies,’ he said in an email interview. ‘However, at this stage, genetic bases of any kind are still in short supply for sub-Saharan African populations so it is going to take a while to realize the benefits.’