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Friday, May 06, 2011

The Three Waves of Indo European Migration in Pre-History

  The major error of Indo European studies is the FALSE equation of "Indo European Language" with "Indo European Race" or "Aryan Race."  The fact is that Race is a concept that doesn't really exist in any universal sense, whereas language is in many ways the very foundation of human culture.

 One of the issues with Pre-History is the lack of written history itself.  This limits sources to non-historical scientific fields like archeology and linguistics.  For Indo European studies, linguistics has proved particularly important because of a combination of twentieth century inaccessibility to archeological sites in Central Asia and the Middle East and the Greek/Latin/Sanskrit comparison itself being both a seminal moment in Indo European Studies AND the foundation of comparative linguistics.

  The main debate in linguistics as it concerns Indo European Studies is what the different Indo Euroepan daughter languages can tell us about WHERE "Proto-Indo-European" speakers CAME FROM.  For a looongggg time the debate focused on finding a "right" answer, but the debate was marred by errors made by earlier linguists.  Current linguistics favors a 'three wave model' of diaspora, with groups spinning off from the center at different times in (pre) History.

   Group A, the first language is Anatolian (present Turkey) and Tokharian (eastern Asia).  Group B is Germanic, Italic, Greek, Indic and Armenian.  Group C is Celtic, Slavic, Baltic Albanian and Iranian.  If you add in the archeological findings in places like the Tarim Basin, the departure/split for Group A is about 2000 BC.  Group B comes as early as 1600 BC and then Group C runs all the way into the "Christian" era.  There was also interaction among the different daughter languages, both between and in-between groups.  For example, Indo-Iranian is commonly referred to as a family, even though under this model Indic proceeds Iranian.

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