Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Kin Groups and Descent
Theoretically, descent is patrilineal in the allocation of rank, but is not used in the formation of groups. Three types of groups in which kinship is an important factor are found: (1) households made up of separately catering individual families, with occasional stem families (tegen); (2) sections of the modern ribbonlike villages largely consisting of relatives, and known as a-sega—a term also used for close relatives up to second cousin; and (3) ad hoc groups of kin assembled from both paternal and maternal lines of descent for specific tasks (e.g., weddings, funerals, trading expeditions).
Nowadays, the kinship is still strong in the village. However when the younger generations migarate to the town area because of works then it is difficullt to track back their family roots, unless thier parents or granparents still alive. Especially when it comes to the fifth generations.
Kin terms are bilateral, with one term, male and female alike, for each of five generations; but the individual family is lineally set apart from other kin. In some districts seniority and gender in the parental generation and in Ego's siblings are terminologically distinguished. Kin terms are given to all relatives up to the second cousins; relatives up to fifth cousin are recognized, but connections beyond are strangers. No term is used for the kindred.
There are several villages along Btg Igan and Btg Oya, most of the people in this area are connected with each family maybe because we have the same ancestors.