Thursday, June 16, 2005

US chat show host could be a Zulu

DNA experts have questioned Oprah Winfrey's belief that she is a member of South Africa's Zulu nation. The African-American chat-show host announced during a recent visit to South Africa that she had had a DNA test that had shown her to be a Zulu. She also told South Africans she felt "at home" in the country. "I went in search of my roots and had my DNA tested, and I am a Zulu," Ms Winfrey said at a seminar in Johannesburg last week. Professor Himla Soodyall of South Africa's National Health Laboratory Service said it was likely that Oprah Winfrey would have taken a mitochondrial DNA test. The historical movement of people around the African continent makes the situation still more complicated. This could, however, explain how Ms Winfrey's DNA matched with a sample from a Zulu person, even though most African-Americans have ancestors who have been traced to west Africa as a consequence of the slave trade. According to most historical accounts, the Zulu nation was consolidated only after the departure of slaves from west Africa to the Americas. South Africa nevertheless has a special place in Ms Winfrey's heart. "I'm crazy about the South African accent," she said. "I wish I had been born here."


At June 17, 2005 5:33 AM, Blogger Don Miguel said...

She could be a Zulu, but she is certainly an intellectual zombie.


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