Why has genealogy become such a national obsession? Studies show that over the past thirty years, the number of Americans who say they are “very interested” in family history has jumped from 29% to 87%. In a new book, Roots Quest: Inside America's Genealogy Boom, Bradley professor Jackie Hogan looks at why we are so fascinated by ancestry.
Hogan says the interest is, in part, a response to some large-scale social changes such as globalization, secularization and the growth of digital and virtual technologies. In Roots Quest, she argues that living in an increasingly rootless society is fueling our search for a sense of belonging.