Is Ancient DNA Research Revealing New Truths — or Falling Into Old Traps? – The New York Times

March 1, 2019

has an interesting discussion of review process at Nature

It has not gone unnoticed that the stunning, magisterial sweep of genetic revisionism, on the one hand, and a genetic emphasis on radical prehistoric migrations, on the other, bear more than a little in common. Some anthropologists
and archaeologists accept this analogy with gallows humor. One told me that I should
model this article after the format of the standard Nature paper: “Ancient DNA Reveals Massive Population Turnovers in the Humanities,” she suggested as a title,
and proposed this as an abstract: “The aristocratic lab scientists arrived with their
superior technology and displaced the pre-existing researchers and their primitive
truth-implements and overcomplicated belief systems.

Serious challenges to its soundness were laid out during
Nature’s peer-review process. And yet, in a highly unusual move, the paper was accepted over the steadfast objections of two of the three peer reviewers on its anonymous panel. Confidential documents made available to me reveal deep concerns with the paper’s methods and its conclusions.