Essay on Kinship As A Mechanism For Social Integrating

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Kinship as a Mechanism for Social Integrating

It is often demonstrated in many anthropological studies that kinship acts as an important means for social integrating in a given society. But is it a fair generalization to say that kinship always functions as a mechanism for social integration? Kinship refers to the relationships established through marriage or descent groups that has been proven in some societies to lead to social integrating, or the process of interaction with other individuals. When researching the case studies we have explored, I found that two main events that utilized kinship for social integrating were death and marriage.

In the Trobriand Islands of Papua New Guinea, in the northern Kiriwina Island,
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When a young woman marries she must move to her husband's house. The parents of the wife bring food to the parents of the groom to make the make the arrangement official. First exchanges at marriage involve the two families and the offering of yams, beku, kuliya, etc.. These exchanges between respective matrilineal kinsmen is a cause of integrating brought about by possible future kinship.

The roles of marriage and death are obviously signification the Trobriand
Islander's society but perhaps death more so than marriage. In contrast with the society of the Yanomamo marriage appears to play a more prominent role than in the Trobrianders.

The Yanomamo as studied by Napoleon Chagnon( ) located in the Venezuela,
Brazilian border, use kinship through the fundamentals of marriage to develop social integrating. The Yanomano are a patrilineal society meaning that all descent groups and kinship recognition are passed through the father. Kinsmen have two names in a Patrilineal society, affines if they are marriage related and agnates if they are in your patrilineage, (father, brother, etc.). The
Yanomamo practice reciprocal exogamy, a matrimonial idea of the trade of sisters between brothers for marriage. For example, a brother from village A who has a sister can trade his sister, as a wife, to another brother from village B for his sister, as a wife *diagram. This is balance trade of women between two individuals from

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