What we are

We all come from somewhere else, originally. Migration is an integral part of the human story. God’s earth is wide, made spacious, for man to migrate to wherever he finds comfort and safety.

This island has seen waves and waves of migration for millennia. Migration makes us what we are. The original inhabitants arrived in palaeolithic times, but even they came from elsewhere. Some came later as invaders — Romans, Vikings, Normans, Franks — laying stake to this land.

The Romani people arrived in the sixteenth century, themselves descendants of the nomadic tribes of Punjab. They were followed by Huguenots in the seventeenth century, lascars in the eighteenth century and Bengalis in the nineteenth century. Germans, Irish and Jewish people joined them.

Many a proud True Brit™ with skin as pale as the winter sky has no idea they are the descent of the multitudes from far-off lands. The proud nationalist, while attacking contemporary migrants from the Punjab regions of northern India, has no idea that his forefathers originated there a thousand years ago.

We are all of each other, blended together through centuries of intermixing and interactions, our destinies shared as we went out into the world and back again. Our understanding of ourselves is mostly a social construct, obliterated by increased understandings of the human genome. We’re all from elsewhere originally.

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