Sc2218 lecture 5 (2010)

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Lecture 5: Family and Kinship

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Sc2218 lecture 5 (2010)

  1. 1. SC2218: Anthropology and the Human Condition Lecture 5: Families and Kinship Eric C. Thompson Semester 1, 2010/2011
  2. 2. Where Are We Going? <ul><li>Part 1: What is Anthropology? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Strangers Abroad, Race, Culture </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Part 2: What do Anthropologists Study? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Kinship </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gender </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Economy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Community </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Part 3: Current Debates and Trends </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Representing Others, The Poetry of Culture, World Anthropologies </li></ul></ul>YOU ARE HERE
  3. 3. Lecture Outline: Kinship and Family <ul><li>What is Kinship? </li></ul><ul><li>Ju/’hoansi kinship (a study in Cultural Complexity). </li></ul><ul><li>Kinship Exercise </li></ul><ul><li>Changing Patterns of Modern Kinship </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Attenuated Kinship in Modern Societies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Technological Innovations and New Horizons of Kinship </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. What is Kinship? <ul><li>Kinship = Social and Cultural Elaborations of Biological Reproduction </li></ul><ul><li>Marriage = Cultural recognition of a sexual relationship; legitimization of paternity. </li></ul><ul><li>Ordering (arranging) social relationships through cultural interpretations of biological reproduction. </li></ul><ul><li>Kinship is “based on” biology. </li></ul><ul><li>But kinship is not determined by biology. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Kinship as an Organizing Principle of Society* <ul><li>Kinship is a primary organizing principle in most, if not all, societies. </li></ul><ul><li>In complex agricultural, industrial, and ‘post-industrial’ societies, other institutions displace kinship. Institutions use kinship metaphorically. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>States (“State Fatherhood”; Citizenship; Patronage) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ethnic Groups, Races,Nations (“Fraternal” Democracy; Imagined Community) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Organized Religion (“Brotherhood” of Monks) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Corporations (“Salary Man”; “Company Man”) </li></ul></ul>*Cultural Principles ordering Social Relationships
  6. 6. Complexity of Kinship* among Dobe Ju/’hoansi (From Lee, The Dobe Ju/’hoansi) *Many thanks to Dr. Stephanie Rupp for creation and use of the slides to follow.
  7. 7. !kun!a !kun!a tun tun !kuma !kuma tuma tuma !ko !kwi tsin tsin !hai =hai ba tai Basic Kin Relations – Dobe Ju/’hoansi ego 1 2 3 4 5 tsiu
  8. 8. !kun!a !kun!a tun tun !kuma !kuma tuma tuma !ko !kwi tsin tsin !hai =hai ba tai Reciprocal Relations – Dobe Ju/’hoansi “ old name” grandfather “ small name” grandson ego grandmother granddaughter
  9. 9. !kun!a !kun!a tun tun tsin !kuma !kuma tuma tuma !ko !kwi tsin !hai =hai ba tai tsu tsu //ga //ga !kun!a !kun!a tun tun !kun!a !kun!a tun tun ego Joking Avoidance Joking Avoidance Joking Reciprocal Relations between Alternate Generations
  10. 10. Man’s perspective Woman’s perspective Affinal* Relations **************************************************************************************************** Joking Kin Joking Affines Avoidance Kin Avoidance Affines =tum =tum /otsu /otsu /otsu /otsu *Related by Marriage
  11. 11. Another Layer of Complexity: Name Relationships Common Pattern - Naming Children after Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
  12. 12. When a Man Is Named after His Father’s Brother … 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Joking Joking Avoidance Joking Avoidance Avoidance
  13. 13. Complicated Intersections of Kinship: Can =Toma and Chu/o Marry? (They must have a ‘joking’ relationship) =Toma Chu/o Joking Joking Chu/o =Toma Avoidance Avoidance
  14. 14. Kinship Exercise <ul><li>AS6 #02-12 (Tutorial Room 14) </li></ul><ul><li>Kinship and Marriage in the Kalahari. </li></ul><ul><li>Each of you will be assigned to a family. </li></ul><ul><li>You must talk to other parents and children to find a good match. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Parents talk to parents; children to children. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>After the “visiting period”, return to LT14, sit with your “family” and discuss marriage proposals. </li></ul>
  15. 15. WIKI Updates <ul><li>Read and follow the DISCUSSION GROUP PREPARATION page (under Information) </li></ul><ul><li>You need to be signed up for the Wiki already! </li></ul><ul><li>You need to contribute to the Wiki soon! </li></ul><ul><li>You need to think of the Wiki as your sandbox… a place to explore and play with ideas. The Wiki is your friend!  </li></ul>
  16. 16. Wiki Due Dates <ul><li>By September 17, you need to make at least one “substantial contribution to the Wiki.” </li></ul><ul><li>For the first half of the course, we will give you feedback based on all contributions made by SEPTEMBER 17. </li></ul><ul><li>For the second half of the course, we will give you a final mark based on all contributions made by NOVEMBER 11. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Concept of Wi – Relative Age Lee to !Xam: “When two people are working out what kin term to employ, how do they decide whose choice is to prevail? !Xam to Lee: “… it is always the older person who wi s the younger person. Since I am older than you, I decide what we should call each other.” (Lee 2003: 72)
  18. 18. Marriage – New Horizons of Kinship Based on Name Relationships All women named N=isa could call him “ husband” All husbands of women named N=isa could call him “ brother” or “co-husband”. All fathers of women named N=isa could call him “son-in-law”. All siblings of women named N=isa could call him “brother-in-law”. ego N=isa
  19. 19. Dobe Camp Composition: Social Organization and Rights to Waterholes Based on Kinship core siblings spouses of core siblings siblings of spouses of core siblings spouses of siblings of spouses of core siblings
  20. 20. Patterns of Marriage <ul><li>Monogamy: One spouse at a time. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Strict Monogamy: One and only one spouse over a lifetime (“until death do we part”) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Serial Monogamy: Culturally acceptable to have more than one spouse over a life time (but only one at a time; divorce and remarriage) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Polygamy: More than one spouse at a time. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Polygyny: Multiple wives allowed.* </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Polyandry: Multiple husbands allowed. </li></ul></ul>*Polygyny is the most common cultural pattern. But usually only a few men, not all, have multiple wives.
  21. 21. “ Fictive Kinship” <ul><li>In many (most?) societies, the role of kinship is so important, people do not know how to relate to one another unless they first establish their kin-relationship. </li></ul><ul><li>People who do not have a place in the kinship system are incorporated into it through “fictive kinship” (e.g. Richard Lee). </li></ul><ul><li>Does Singapore have “fictive” kinship? </li></ul>
  22. 22. Loss of Complexity in Industrial Societies <ul><li>In industrial societies, kinship becomes less important than foraging or agrarian societies. </li></ul><ul><li>Complexity of kinship is lost as its organizational importance is displaced by other cultural principles and social institutions. </li></ul><ul><li>“ Anglo-American” kinship in the 19 th century (Gillis) </li></ul><ul><li>Contemporary China under the one-child policy. </li></ul>
  23. 23. 1980 2000 2020 China’s kinship structure – “One Child Policy” “ Uncle” “ Aunt” “ Cousin” Will All Structurally Cease to Exist (At least in theory)
  24. 24. New Horizons of Kinship <ul><li>What are the implications of new reproductive technology? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the implications of completely decoupling sex and reproduction? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Highly effective birth control; abortion </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sperm donation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Surrogate Motherhood </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Commodification </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Men pay for sex </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Women pay for sperm </li></ul></ul></ul>
  25. 25. 48QAH <ul><li>Donor #48-QAH (“Quite a Hunk”) </li></ul><ul><li>150-200 Donations @ $50 each. </li></ul><ul><li>Paid $10,000 to father up to 200 children. (Surrogate mothers get more to give birth to just one child.) </li></ul><ul><li>Implications? </li></ul><ul><li>Relationship with Donor; Siblings? </li></ul><ul><li>Paternal Responsibilities? </li></ul><ul><li>“ Surrogate Fathers”? </li></ul><ul><li>Accidental Incest? </li></ul><ul><li>Industry Regulation? </li></ul>
  26. 26. Meet the Donor 66 Family <ul><li>The Donor Sibling Registry: Creating “Donor Families” (Started by Wendy and Ryan Kramer) </li></ul><ul><li>Donor 66 Family: Ryan, his 10 to 25 siblings, their mothers. </li></ul><ul><li>30,000 children every year in the United States. </li></ul><ul><li>Up to 1 Million children so far. </li></ul><ul><li>The DSR has identified up to 20 Siblings from 1 Donor. </li></ul><ul><li>Cases of over one hundred offspring from single donors </li></ul>Front Row: Women who share a Donor Back Row: Siblings and half-siblings 6 Brothers & Sisters of 5 Mothers & Donor 66
  27. 27. Kinship & Cultivation of the Heart <ul><li>Kinship, like all cultural systems, is a conceptual structure that people are born into, live through, and which remains after the death of any individual. </li></ul><ul><li>Kinship (and other cultural systems) are perpetuated through the struggles, triumphs, creativity and cultivation of the people who live them . . . Think of… </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The experimentation with family and kinship in America and Europe during the early 19 th century (Gillis) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The struggle of Dadi to simultaneously hold her family together and to see her children thrive (“Dadi’s Family”). </li></ul></ul>Two TUN with their TUMA BA and !HAI

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