(?)
Quotes are added by the Goodreads community and are not verified by Goodreads. (Learn more)
Ellen Meloy

“ In genealogy you might say that interest lies in the eye of the gene holder. The actual descendants are far more intrigued with it all than the listeners, who quickly sink into a narcoleptic coma after the second or third great-great-somebody kills a bear or beheads Charles I, invents the safety pin or strip-mines Poland, catalogues slime molds, dances flamenco, or falls in love with a sheep. Genealogy is a forced march through stories. Yet everyone loves stories, and that is one reason we seek knowledge of our own blood kin.
Through our ancestors we can witness their times. Or, we think, there might be something in their lives, an artist’s or a farmer’s skill, an affection for a certain landscape, that will match or explain something in our own. If we know who they were, perhaps we will know who we are. And few cultures have been as identity-obsessed as ours. So keen is this fascination with ancestry, genealogy has become an industry. Family reunions choke the social calendar. Europe crawls with ancestor-seeking Americans. Your mother or your spouse or your neighbors are too busy to talk to you because they are on the Internet running “heritage quests.” We have climbed so far back into our family trees, we stand inches away from the roots where the primates dominate.”


Ellen Meloy, The Anthropology of Turquoise: Reflections on Desert, Sea, Stone, and Sky
Read more quotes from Ellen Meloy


Share this quote:
Share on Twitter

Friends Who Liked This Quote


To see what your friends thought of this quote, please sign up!


This Quote Is From

The Anthropology of Turquoise: Reflections on Desert, Sea, Stone, and Sky The Anthropology of Turquoise: Reflections on Desert, Sea, Stone, and Sky by Ellen Meloy
1,497 ratings, average rating, 233 reviews
Open Preview

Browse By Tag