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Kinship and Domestic Life (Chapter 6). The BIG Questions. How do cultures create kinship ties through descent, sharing, and marriage? What is a household and what do anthropologists study about household life? How are kinship and households changing?. What is Kinship Cross-Culturally?.

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Kinship and Domestic Life (Chapter 6)

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Kinship and domestic life chapter 6

Kinship and Domestic Life(Chapter 6)


The big questions

The BIG Questions

  • How do cultures create kinship ties through descent, sharing, and marriage?

  • What is a household and what do anthropologists study about household life?

  • How are kinship and households changing?


What is kinship cross culturally

What is Kinship Cross-Culturally?

  • What is kinship?

    • Kinship is a sense of being related to another person or persons

      • A family is a group of people who consider themselves related through kinship (can be by blood, marriage, or adoption)

    • Has various rules and/or laws determining who is kin and who is not, what to call various kin, how they behave towards other kin, etc.

      • A kinship system is the combination of rules about who are kin and the expected behavior of kin

    • Kinship links with all aspects of culture

      • Kinship is often linked with modes of production and reproduction, as well as various symbols and beliefs


What is the importance of kinship

What is the importance of kinship?

  • Is a main way that social life is organized in all cultures

  • The kinship group has a variety of functions…

    • Ensures the continuity of the group by arranging/supporting marriages

    • Strives to maintain social order by setting moral rules and punishing offenders

    • Provides for the basic needs of members by regulating production, consumption, and distribution

    • Ideally provides psychological support


What is the importance of kinship1

What is the importance of kinship?

  • Especially in societies where other institutions such as centralized government, a professional military, or financial banks are absent or do not function effectively, in such societies individuals must depend on a wide network of kin for support and protection

    • Need kin to secure food, shelter, and other necessities


Depicting kinship

Depicting Kinship

  • Kinship diagram

    • A schematic way of presenting the kinship relationships of a particular individual

      • Starts with a particular individual (ego)

  • Genealogy

    • A schematic way of presenting a family tree, constructed by beginning with the earliest ancestors that can be traced, then working down to the present

      • Does not begin with ego


Drawing a kinship chart symbols for individuals

Drawing a Kinship Chart: Symbols for Individuals

female

male

deceased female

deceased male

female “ego” of the diagram

male “ego” of the diagram


Kinship relationships

Kinship Relationships

is married to

is cohabiting with

is divorced from

is separated from

adopted-in female

adopted-in male

is descended from

is the sibling of


Three ways of being kin

Three Ways of Being Kin

  • Descent

  • Sharing

  • Marriage


Descent

Descent

  • Descent is the tracing of kinship relationships through parentage

    • Bilateral descent system

      • A child is recognized as being related by descent to both parents

        • Most associated with foraging and industrialism/informatics modes of production

    • Unilineal descent system

      • Recognizes descent through only one parent, either the father (patrilineal) or the mother (matrilineal)

      • Most common form of descent (60 percent of the world’s cultures)

        • Most associated with pastoralism, horticulture, and agricultural modes of production


Descent1

Descent

  • Which descent system do we have in the U.S.?

    • Bilateral descent system or Unilineal descent system


Descent2

Descent

  • Which descent system do we have in the U.S.?

  • Bilateral descent system

    • Socially related to both our parents

    • Trace ancestry through both our parents

  • Some aspects of a patrilineal system

    • Women taking on husband’s last name when they marry

      • Children receiving father’s last name

    • Father giving away daughter at the wedding

  • Some aspects of a matrilineal system

    • High divorce rates or female-headed households

      • Children often live with mother, take on mother’s last name


Bilateral descent

Bilateral Descent

  • Traces kinship from both parents equally to the child

    • Socially related to both the mother and father

  • Found in about 40 percent of the world’s cultures

  • Most common among foraging societies and industrial/informatics societies

    • Both rely on a flexible gender division of labor in which both males and females contribute to production and exchange relatively equally

    • Small family units in these environments are adaptive and more mobile – more opportunities for surviving and making a living

      • U.S.

      • Ju/’hoansi

      • Inuit/Eskimo


Patrilineal descent

Patrilineal Descent

  • Kinship is traced through the male line

    • Socially related to father

  • Found among 45 percent of all cultures

  • Common in a variety of different modes of production

  • Most common in areas where men play the primary role in the production of food and other resources

  • Men are the primary decision makers and have the most power

  • Property is passed down through the male line


Patrilineal descent1

  • Found among 45% of all cultures

  • Kinship is traced through the male line

  • Males dominate status, power, and property

  • Patriline = purple color in this diagram

Patrilineal Descent


Patrilineal descent2

Patrilineal Descent


Matrilineal descent

Matrilineal Descent

  • Kinship is traced through the female line

    • Socially related to mother

      • Male in the society “holds his children in his lap, but guides his nieces and nephews with his right hand.” Male takes special responsibility for his sister’s children, who are socially more related to him than his own children (p. 146)

  • Found among 15 percent of all cultures

  • Exists in a variety of modes of production but is most commonly found in horticultural societies in which females play a large role in the production and distribution of food and other resources

  • Often associated with public leadership positions for women


Matrilineal descent1

Matrilineal Descent

  • Found among 15% of all cultures

  • Kinship is traced through the female line

  • Women control land and products

  • Found in Southeast Asia, the South Pacific, and in some parts of Europe and North America

  • Example: the Minangkabau of Indonesia

  • Matriline = purple color in this diagram


Matrilineal descent2

Matrilineal Descent


Example of a matrilineal culture the minangkabau of indonesia

Example of a matrilineal culture: the Minangkabau of Indonesia


Residence rules

Residence Rules

  • Refer to where a couple moves to after they decide to cohabit or get married

    • Patrilocal

    • Matrilocal

    • Neolocal

    • Ambilocal or Bilocal

  • Often follows the prevailing direction of descent rules, but not always

    • Ashanti – matrilineal and patrilocal

  • Has political, economic, and social implications


Residence rules1

Residence Rules

  • Patrilocal (or virilocal) – marital residence with or near the husband’s family

    • Often occurs in patrilineal societies

      • Patrilineal descent and patrilocal residence promote the development of cohesive male-focused lineages that are associated with frequent local warfare, which requires the presence of a force of fighting men on the home front

    • Often occurs in societies where men own/control land and resources


Residence rules2

Residence Rules

  • Matrilocal (or uxorilocal) – martial residence with or near the wife’s family

    • Often occurs in matrilineal societies

      • Matrilineal descent and matrilocal residence is often found among groups that engage in long-distance warfare

        • Strong female household bonds maintain the domestic scene while the men are absent on military campaigns (e.g. precolonial Iroquois of upstate New York)

    • Often occurs in societies where women own/control land and resources


Residence rules3

Residence Rules

  • Neolocal

    • Marital residence in a place different from either the bride’s or groom’s family

    • Common in Western industrialized society

      • Small family units in these environments are adaptive and more mobile – more opportunities for surviving and making a living


Residence rules4

Residence Rules

  • Ambilocal or bilocal

    • Marital residence in a place near either the bride’s or groom’s family

      • Get to choose which side of the family to live near

    • Common in foraging societies

      • Genders have relatively equal power

      • More adaptive depending on the available environmental resources


Kin through sharing

Kin through Sharing

  • Many cultures emphasize kinship ties based on acts of sharing and support

    • May be either informal or formally certified

      • Godparents

      • Adoption

      • Fostering a child

      • Food sharing

        • Rice-sharing in Malaysia – people who eat cooked rice together may be viewed as kin although they are not blood relatives


Kinship through sharing

In many cultures people create kinship through sharing

Food sharing

Adoption and fostering

Godparents

Kinship Through Sharing


Two kinship naming systems

Two Kinship Naming Systems


Eskimo kinship naming system

Eskimo Kinship Naming System


Iroquois kinship naming system

Iroquois Kinship Naming System


Marriage definition

Marriage - Definition

  • Marriage exists in all cultures, though it may take different forms and serve different functions.

  • Marriage is defined as a more or less stable union, usually between two people, who may be, but are not necessarily, co-residential, sexually involved with each other, and procreative with each other.


Some functions of marriage

Some Functions of Marriage

  • To form alliances between or within different groups or families

  • Establish social and economic contracts

  • To rear children

  • To define social identity of children

  • To regulate sexual activity


Marriage preferences and rules

Marriage Preferences and Rules

  • All cultures have preferences about whom one should and should not marry and with whom one should and should not have sexual intercourse

    • Some preferences are informal and implicit

    • Other preferences are formal and explicit

  • All cultures have some sort of rules of exclusion or incest taboo - a rule prohibiting marriage or sexual intercourse between close relatives

    • Who is defined as a “close” relative differs across cultures

    • Universal – taboo against marriage or sexual relationships between parents and children

    • Nearly universal – taboo against marriage and sexual relationships between brothers and sisters


Marriage preferences

Marriage Preferences

  • Also preferences about marrying within or outside of a particular group

    • Endogamy – marriage within a particular group

      • e.g. marrying someone within your social class

      • e.g. marrying someone within your religion

      • e.g. marrying someone within your village

      • e.g. marrying someone within your kin

        • Cross-cousin marriage

        • Parallel-cousin marriage

    • Exogamy – marriage outside a defined group

      • e.g. marrying someone outside your village

      • e.g. marrying someone outside your social class

    • A society that practices exogamy at one level may practice endogamy at another.


Two forms of cousin marriage

Two Forms of Cousin Marriage


Is first cousin marriage legal in the u s

Is first cousin marriage legal in the U.S.?


Is first cousin marriage legal in the u s1

Is first cousin marriage legal in the U.S.?

  • It is in many states!

  • http://www.ncsl.org/default.aspx?tabid=4266


But oh no you say if i do that my children will be horribly deformed

But – oh no, you say! If I do that my children will be horribly deformed!


But oh no you say if i do that my children will be horribly deformed1

But – oh no, you say! If I do that my children will be horribly deformed!

  • But not so fast…

    • That depends largely on the genetics of the family

    • A number of research studies show that risks of genetic problems are only slightly increased with first-cousin marriage

  • First cousins: know the risks.(Upfront: News in perspective)(Brief article). Source:New Scientist 198.2657 (May 24, 2008): p4(1). (276 words)

    • (continued on next page)


But oh no you say if i do that my children will be horribly deformed2

But – oh no, you say! If I do that my children will be horribly deformed!

  • “geneticist Alan Bittles of Murdoch University in Perth, Western Australia, says education and genetic testing is the best way to minimise the risk.”

  • “To estimate the risk, Bittle reviewed 48 studies from 11 countries. He found that infant mortality is only 1.2 per cent higher among the children of first cousins compared with children that have more distantly related parents. That is in line with a 2002 review suggesting that first-cousin children are less than 3 per cent more likely to have birth defects.”


Marriage preferences1

Marriage Preferences

  • What are some factors involved in spouse selection?

  • What characteristics would your ideal spouse have?

  • How do you think your family’s idea of an ideal spouse for you would compare/contrast with your idea of the ideal spouse?

    • Would you be open to the idea of your family arranging a marriage for you? Why or why not?

  • How are these ideas influenced by your culture?


Marriage preferences2

Marriage Preferences

  • Preferences

    • Features such as age, height, looks, wealth, education, personality characteristics

    • Romantic love in some cultures

    • Spouse’s ability to bear children, physical strength, clan membership, etc. in other cultures


Status considerations in partner selection heterosexual pairing

Status Considerations in Partner Selection (Heterosexual Pairing)


Marriage gifts

Marriage Gifts

  • Most marriages are accompanied by exchanges of goods or services between the partners, members of their families, and friends

    • Dowry – transfer of goods and sometimes money from the bride’s side of the family to the new married couple for their use

    • Brideprice (bridewealth) – transfer of goods or money from the groom’s family to the bride’s family

    • Bride-service – a type of brideprice which includes the transfer of labor from the groom to his parents-in-law for a designated time period

    • Can get mixtures of these – U.S. groom’s family traditionally pays for the rehearsal dinner and bride’s family pays for the wedding


Major types of marriage gifts and exchanges

Major Types of Marriage Gifts and Exchanges


Forms of marriage

Forms of Marriage

  • Monogamy – a marriage between two people

    • Heterosexual monogamy is the most common form of marriage cross-culturally

    • In many countries it is the only legal form of marriage

  • Polygamy – a marriage involving multiple spouses

    • A pattern allowed in many cultures

    • Are two forms of polygamy…

      • Polygyny – marriage of one man with more than one woman

      • Polyandry – marriage of one woman with more than one man

        • Tibet, Nepal, Sri Lanka, some parts of India


Forms of marriage1

Monogamy: marriage between two people

Most common form of marriage cross-culturally

Polygamy: marriage with multiple spouses

Polygyny: one man and more than one woman

Polyandry: one woman and more than one man

Forms of Marriage


Polygamy videos

Polygamy Videos

  • Polygamy in the U.S.

    • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QkMgjxU6gN0

      • Estimated between 30,000 and 100,000 polygamists living in the U.S.

  • Polygamy amongst the Maasi

    • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kq_cptHufTQ&feature=related


Forms of marriage2

Forms of Marriage

  • What are some drawbacks and advantages of polygamy?


Households

Households

  • A household is a person or persons who occupy a shared living space and who may or may not be related by kinship

    • Can be made up of families but not always

      • a group of friends who live in the same apartment make up a household, though they are not kin

      • a single person living alone can also be a household

    • Residential unit that carries out economic production and consumption, co-ordinates work, inheritance, child rearing, provision of shelter

    • Humans are dependent on group living for survival

      • Household is often the first place we turn to have our physical, economic, social, and psychological needs fulfilled


Household types

Household Types

  • Nuclear household

    • Domestic group that contains one adult couple, with or without children

    • Most characteristic of the foraging and industrial/informatics mode of production

      • Reflects need for spatial mobility and flexibility in both modes of production

  • Extended household

    • Domestic group that contains more than one adult married couple

      • Constitute a substantial proportion of households in horticultural, pastoralist, and agricultural economies


Household types1

Household Types

  • Single-person or single-parent household

    • Single-person household

      • One person living alone

    • Single-parent household

      • One person living with his/her children


Household types2

Household Types

  • What are some advantages and drawbacks of each household type?


Intrahousehold dynamics

Intrahousehold Dynamics

  • Spouse/partner relationships

    • Marital satisfaction differs in love matches and arranged marriages

  • Domestic violence

    • Found in most but not all cultures and in differing degrees

    • More common where men control wealth and where woman have less power


Changing kinship and household dynamics

Changing Kinship and Household Dynamics

  • Change in descent

    • Decline of matrilineal descent due to colonialism and globalization

      • Males were named as household heads, and land was registered in their names


Changing kinship and household dynamics1

Changing Kinship and Household Dynamics

  • Change in marriage

    • Decrease in arranged marriages and increases in elopements

      • Spread of globalization and western ideas of finding “the one” by yourself and falling in love and living happily ever after

    • Age at time of first marriage is increasing

      • Women getting more education, both men and women wanting to save and be more financially stable before marriage

    • Increasing number of marriages between people of different nations and ethnicities

      • Globalization and technological advances - Ease of communication and travel across long distances


Changing kinship and household dynamics2

Changing Kinship and Household Dynamics

  • Change in marriage

    • Marriage crises

      • Situations in which people who want to get married cannot do so for one reason or another

        • Often economic reasons

          • Cannot afford to pay a culturally appropriate bride-price

          • Unequal ratio of men to women

    • Increasing desire for the ideal, western-like, fairy tale wedding ceremonies

      • Brought about by globalization


Changing kinship and household dynamics3

Changing Kinship and Household Dynamics

  • Changing households

    • Possibility for decline in extended families in industrializing areas

      • Possibility for increase in the nuclear family, which is more flexible/mobile

    • Less nuclear families in the U.S. and increased diversity in households forms

      • In 1950, 60% of U.S. households were nuclear families with dependent children

      • Today only 24% of U.S. households are nuclear families with dependent children

      • Rise in unmarried couples living together

      • Rise in households with children living with grandparents or other relatives

      • Rise in single-family households

      • Rise in blended families (like the Brady Bunch)


Changing kinship and household dynamics4

Changing Kinship and Household Dynamics

  • Changing households

    • International migration

      • Increasing intra-household conflict with international migration

        • Tension between children learning the new culture and adults retaining the ancestral culture

      • Or one household member lives and works abroad temporarily and semi-permanently (often a male)

        • Sends money back home (often to a wife and children)


The big questions revisited

The BIG Questions Revisited

  • How do cultures create kinship ties through descent, sharing, and marriage?

  • What is a household and what do anthropologists study about household life?

  • How are kinship and households changing?


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