comparative ethonographic review Essay

2972 Words Mar 25th, 2014 12 Pages
National University of Singapore
Sociology Department

SC2218
Anthropology and the Human Condition

Comparative Ethnographic Review Essay

It would seem that in every society, marriage is one necessary representation of the society’s culture. Marriage regulates, organizes and legitimizes sexual relations. Human societies have many different marriage systems, and in my review of “Everyday Life in Southeast Asia” and “The Dobe Ju/’hoansi”, it seems that this recurring theme of marriage is always constrained by the cultures, or rules, that were built upon it. While we see illustrations of elaborate structures within culture that determine if a union between two human beings through
…show more content…
However, this egalitarianism and freedom in marriage had changed by the end of the twentieth century. As the Thai state increased its control of territory within the boundaries of Thailand, land was no longer free for all Lisu people to use and cultivate without legal ownership. The end of the opium economy was the most profound change in the social economic system of the Lisu that affected their marriage practices. The inflation of bridewealth in the opium days was not matched by deflation with the end of the opium economy. It seems that the rigidity of Lisu marriage systems were constrained by the culture of bridewealth that had been best defined during the opium economy, and what resulted in the aftermath of this profound change was the increase in age at first marriage and a frightening increase in the number of suicide among unmarried girls in their twenties due to the inability to amass the same bridewealth to afford marriage like before.

Tradition among Ethnic Minorities

We see then a similar theme in the context of a Mien wedding as described by Jonsson. The goal of ethnographers in documenting a traditional wedding in Rom Yen, Thailand, was to classify and document ethnically specific practices and to contribute to

Related Documents