I have never believed “out of Africa” theory. The notion that all human life originated in Africa and that some Africans walked out the Dark Continent into Europe and became white makes no sense.
More likely, human life sprung up independently in Africa, Asia, and Europe. It turns out that there are serious issues with the idea that a black Eve is the mother of us all.
“Out of Africa,” the theory that modern humans evolved relatively recently in Africa and then spread to the rest of the world, has been popular in many quarters. Anti-racists like the theory because they claim it suggests there has not been enough time for the evolution of racial differences. The Out-of-Africa scenario led to the theory of an “African Eve,” a woman in Africa who was mother to us all.
This theory is based on analysis of mitochondrial DNA, or mtDNA. The mitochondria are small inclusions in the cells that provide power for cell functions, and they have their own DNA that is separate from the chromosomal DNA in the cell nucleus. The theory has been that mtDNA is transmitted only from mother-to-offspring via the cytoplasm of the egg.
As it happens, sperm also have mitochondria; they power the flailing tail that drives a sperm to its target. But the theory has been that only the chromosomal DNA from the sperm nucleus is incorporated into the fertilized egg, which rejects the male mtDNA. Recent research casts doubt on this theory. mtDNA from the sperm may sometimes recombine with that from the mother. If so, the whole edifice of mtDNA-based theory, the African Eve, and also much Out-of-Africa speculation collapses.
[B. Fowler, “A genetic tool to track evolution. Or is it?” New York Times, 25 Jan. 2000]
This article at Salon claims we are all Africans, but offers an interesting and understandable discussion of DNA studies.
This video claims we’re all Africans:
PDF of academic paper critiquing out of Africa I couldn’t get this paper to load.
Academic paper covering alternate theories of human origins Out of Australia??? Many theories abound in higher ed.