An investigation of dermatoglyphic variation among ethnic populations in Kenya
In 1973 and 1975 hand prints were collected from 6,235 Kenyan schoolchildren drawn from 61 ethnic populations, of which 57 male and 53 female samples are suitable for analysis. The study describes dermatoglyphic variation in these samples, and attempts preliminary explanatory analysis. Part One is concerned with background (Chapter 1) and the nature of biological populations, sampling and fieldwork (Chapter 2). Part Two discusses methodology, and inter-sample dermatoglyphic variation. Chapter 3 introduces the approach to the descriptive and explanatory investigations, and Chapter 4 outlines methodological procedures adopted for dermatoglyphic attribute measurement, coding and the minimisation of errors. The descriptive investigation begins in Chapter 5, by examining the "basic structure" of dermatoglyphic variation in Kenya. The results show that the variation is discordant, and that no distinctive clusters are in evidence when multivariate measures of inter-sample affinity are applied in Chapter 6. A feature of the descriptive results is the failure of the male and female series to exhibit similar taxonomic rankings for equivalent dermatoglyphic traits. The explanatory investigation in Part Three begins with an analysis of sex differences to try and account for this discordance (Chapter 7). Chapters 8 and 9 are devoted to the examination of major types of variation. Chapter 8 explores the extent to which observed dermatoglyphic resemblance between population samples corresponds to patterns of linguistic and ethnic affinity. In Chapter 9 ecotyplc variation is considered. Specifically investigated is the question whether systematic and non-random dermatoglyphic variation exists when samples are pooled into altitude and rainfall zones. The positive results obtained are amongst the most interesting of the study.