Get Kinship and Class in the West Indies: A Genealogical Study PDF

By Raymond T. Smith

ISBN-10: 0511558155

ISBN-13: 9780511558153

ISBN-10: 0521345227

ISBN-13: 9780521345224

ISBN-10: 0521396492

ISBN-13: 9780521396493

Is a kinfolk method that allows freedom to go into, dissolve, and re-enter sexual unions, that tolerates excessive illegitimacy charges, and permits a wide percentage of families to be headed by means of girls, achievable, common and fit? this can be a suitable query to invite of many sleek business societies within the Nineteen Eighties. but a procedure with simply these components has been in position within the West Indies for one hundred fifty years. during this e-book, Raymond T. Smith explores the huge family members and kinship ties of West Indians in Jamaica and Guyana, and in so doing dispels the various myths that exist approximately West Indian relatives existence.

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Extra resources for Kinship and Class in the West Indies: A Genealogical Study of Jamaica and Guyana

Example text

One interviewer could handle about six informants at a time, interviewing each one perhaps twice a week. Attempting more interviews than this resulted in the accumulation of untranscribed notes and tapes. Jack Alexander used a different method of selection of informants for his year-long study of middle-class families in Kingston, Jamaica. Names of potential informants were suggested by people he consulted, such as clergymen, or he contacted informants at meetings of civic organizations, or they were introduced to him by mutual friends.

The most important unit in Bengali kinship is the parivara, a unit which takes a living male as its reference point and consists of all the persons who share the bodily substance of this svami, or master: 'his wife, his sons, his sons' wives and sons, and perhaps even their wives and sons' (Inden and Nicholas 1977, p. 5). Although it may appear that a man, his wife and their unmarried children constitute a unit identical to that of the European 'nuclear family,' especially since Bengalis often live in households that appear to consist of just such a group, there is no such cultural unit in Bengali kinship.

Even so, the principles for structuring the spontaneous kin list are the same, with the addition of a few auxiliary influences. ' No extensive analysis of lower class kin lists will be made here, but a few examples will illustrate the general principles. Elva Lawrence (case number 405) listed 123 relatives in her first interview, a listing interspersed with a great deal of fascinating commentary. She started with her mother who was about to celebrate her one hundredth birthday, and proceeded systematically to her father, and then her brothers and sisters, distinguishing them by birth order, sex and whether they were alive or dead.

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Kinship and Class in the West Indies: A Genealogical Study of Jamaica and Guyana by Raymond T. Smith


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