Chapter Preview What Is Marriage? What Is Family? What Is the Difference Between Family and Household?
Control of Sexual Relations In societies which lack effective birth control methods; sexual control becomes increasingly important Every society has rules that govern sexual access. These “rules” can certainly vary depending on the society. Most all groups of people will have some regulations on sexual access in respect to: Gender, Age, Marital Status, Social Status, etc.
Marriage Marriage has been a long standing tradition that allows sexual access between to partner to be established. Marriage is a culturally sanctioned union between two or more people that established rights and obligations between them and their children, and also in-laws. Rights and obligations include but are not limited to, sex, labor, property, child rearing, exchange,and status
A positive aspect of marriage is the restriction of sexually transmitted diseases (STD) that is can bring. This is provided that the culture adheres to it’s cultural marriage sanctions of no sex outside of the marriage. In cultures where sexual relationships are limited to the marriage and this is “followed” there is a significant decrease of STD’s.
Marriage Although it may seem that monogamous sexual relationships are most common to citizens of the United States the reality is that most cultures, worldwide, do not prohibit the act of sexual relationships to marriage or even to a monogamous relationship for that matter.
Sexual and Marriage Practices among the Nayar The Nayar are one of many examples of sexually permissive cultures. A landowning warrior caste, their estates are held by corporations made up of kinsmen related in the female line. These relatives live together in a household, with the eldest male serving as manager. Traditionally, Nayar boys began military training around age of 7. They will be away from home for most other their young adult life.
The Nayar: Three Traditional Transactions 1. Ritual Husband Shortly before a girl experienced her first menstruation there was a ceremony that joined her with a “ritual husband” in a temporary union which did not necessarily involve sexual relations. Neither individual has obligations to one another, although upon adulthood if her first “husband” should die she and her children (not his) would be expected to mourn for him.
The Nayar: Three Traditional Transactions 2. Visiting Husband When a young Nayar woman enters into a continuing sexual liaison with a man approved by her family. This becomes a formal relationship that requires the man to present her with gifts three times each year until the relationship is terminated. The man can spend the night(s) with her, but has no obligation to support her economically. The woman may have had such an arrangement with more than one man at the same time.
The Nayar: Three Traditional Transactions 3. Establishing Child Birth Rights When the woman became pregnant, one of the men with whom she has a relationship must acknowledge paternity by making gifts to the woman and the midwife. Once a man has accepted possible paternity of a child he may remain interested in the child's welfare but holds no real obligations to the child or the mother.
Kin Relations & The Nayar Among the Nayar families are comprised of consanguineal kin- biologically related relatives, or blood relatives. This does not include the “husband” who has claimed paternity to a child which would be known as affinal kin- or people related through marriage.
Incest Taboo Similar to marriage determining sexual rights among certain individuals the incest taboo establishes the prohibition of sexual relations between specified individuals, usually parent-child and sibling relations at a minimum. Although differing among society throughout time, most all societies will have some prohibition of sexual relationships with parents and children or siblings.
The basic idea of the incest taboo is that it is against human nature to have and act upon a sexual attraction to one of these closely relatives (parent, sibling, child). Several supporting points on why the incest taboo exists: Biology Familiarity Competition
Endogamy Furthering marriage as a sexual access regulator is the idea of endogamy or marriage within a particular group or category of individuals. Some cultures may specifically adhere to the idea that one must marry within a specified group. This group might be defined by the culture as (in-laws, family, ethnic, or by religion)
Exogamy The opposite of endogamy is the practice of exogamy or marriage outside of the group. Again this “group” may vary by the cultural definition. Some cultures might practice both endogamy and exogamy. Trobriand Islanders practice marriage exogamy, however they marriage within the overall village which would be considered endogamy.
Distinction Between Marriage and Mating All animals, including humans, mate—some for life and some not, some with a single individual and some with several. Marriage is a culturally recognized right and is backed by social, political, and ideological factors that regulate sexual relations and reproductive rights and obligations. This is in contrast to mating.
Forms of Marriage There are several recognized forms of marriage worldwide. Monogamy Polygyny Polyandry Group marriage
Monogamy Monogamy is the most common form of marriage worldwide in which both partners have just one spouse. The only recognized form in North America and most of Europe. Serial monogamy – a marriage form whereby an individual marries or lives with a series of partners in succession. Increasingly common among middle-class North Americans as individuals divorce and remarry.
Polygamy Polygamy- one individual having multiple spouses at the same time is not the most common but the most preferred form of marriage worldwide. Polygamy is practiced in about 80-85% of the worlds cultures. There are two types of polygamy. Polygyny- Man having multiple wives (most common) Polyandry- Female having multiple husbands
Group Marriage or Co- Marriage Rare but occurring in a small percentage of the world are marriage practices that do not fit into the other categories discussed. Group Marriage where several men and women have sexual access to one another also known as co- marriage is common to the Native American Eskimo.
Fictive Marriage Contrast to group marriage are fictive marriages marriage by proxy to the symbols of someone not physically present to establish the social status of a spouse and heirs. Among the Nuer of Sudan a woman may marry a man who is no longer alive and his living brother may serve as a “stand-in” and marry the woman. Any offspring will be considered sired by the dead man’s spirit!
Fictive Marriages The children will then become the rightful heirs to land and other possessions. Not just common to the Nuer this practice is also found in North America and Europe. In the Unities States legal weddings can be performed if one person is on deployment (with military), incarcerated, or otherwise physically unable to be present.
Cousin Marriage In some societies, cousins are the preferred marriage partners. Although which cousin makes a difference. A parallel cousin is the child of a father’s brother or a mother’s sister. In some societies, the preferred spouse for a man is his father’s brother’s daughter, known as patrilateral parallel-cousin marriage. Other societies favor matrilateral cross-cousin marriage—marriage of a man to his mother’s brother’s daughter, or a woman to her father’s sister’s son.
Kinship Diagram Anthropologists use diagrams to illustrate kinship relationships.
Three Arguments Against Same Sex Marriage 1.) All Marriages are between Men and Women Same-sex marriages have been documented not only in a number of societies in Africa, but in other parts of the world as well. Anthropologists define marriage as unions between “people” not man and women because not all marriages are male and female based.
Arguments Against Same Sex Marriage 2.) Same-sex unions legitimize gays and lesbians, whose sexual orientations have been widely regarded as unnatural. Neither cross-cultural studies nor studies of other animal species suggest that homosexual behavior is unnatural. 3.) The function of marriage is to produce children. Marriage involves economic, political, and legal considerations. It is increasingly common for same-sex partners to have children through adoption or reproductive technologies.
Economic Exchange & Marriage Many societies practice differing forms of economic exchange before or after a marriage transaction. These exchanges usually involve the bride, groom, and the immediately families of each. There are three main forms of marriage exchange: Bride Price Bride Service Dowry
Marriage Exchanges A bride-price is a payment of money or goods from the grooms family to the brides family. This is usually completed around the time of the marriage. Similar to the bride price is the bride service where the groom is expected to work for a period of time for the bride’s family. No compensation is giving.
A dowry is a payment of a woman’s inheritance at the time of marriage to her or her husband. However, the female may not always remain in control of the dowry, after marriage it will likely become her husbands property. The functions of a dowry are to secure the female in the event of her husbands death (widowhood),divorce, or infertility of the female. They can also be a sign of status.
Divorce Similar to marriage, how a divorce is viewed or accepted can vary in each society. Factors contributing to divorce can include: Divorce rates are climbing in numbers around the world but at the fastest rate in Western societies. One theory is that many marriages did not last longer than 10-20 years due to high mortality rates prior to 1800. Today with better health care and preventative medicine people are living much longer- leading to a possible higher rate of divorce.
Family A family, two or more people related by blood, marriage, or adoption, may take many forms. Families can range from a single parent with one or more children, to a married couple or polygamous spouses with offspring, to several generations of parents and their children. The household is the primary residential unit of economic production, consumption, inheritance, child rearing, and shelter.
Forms of the Family To better understand the differing forms that families may take it is first important to distinguish between a conjugal family and a consanguineal family conjugal family. A conjugal family or a family established through marriage can consist of one or more married men or women and their offspring.
Forms of the Family The consanguineal family which is a family of blood relatives, often consists of related women, their brothers, and the women’s offspring. Less common form of family.
Forms of the Family There are two more family forms which consist of the nuclear and the extended. The nuclear family consists of one or more parents and dependent offspring, which may include a stepparent, stepsiblings, and adopted children. Whereas the extended family is a collection of nuclear families, related by ties of blood, that live in one household.
Other Family Forms On the rise in North America and Europe are nonfamily and nontraditional households. Nonfamily households consist of a single person living alone or with non relatives. Nontraditional households are also referred too as single parent households which could be due to offspring out of wedlock, divorce, widowhood, separation, or even an active decision of fertile women to chose motherhood without a partner.
Household Types in the United States in 2000 Prior to viewing the next slide with statistical data from the US Census Bureau of 2000, consider these questions first. 1.) Which household covered thus far would you consider to be the most common in the United States? 2.) Which would be the least common? 3.) Which, if any, would be non-existent?
Did everyone have the correct answers? If not why? 1.) Which household covered thus far would you consider to be the most common in the United States? 2.) Which would be the least common? 3.) Which, if any, would be non-existent? 1.) Non-Family or One Person 2.) Family members without dependent children or married couples. 3.) All are present from what the data suggests although we do not have the exact household configuration from each.
Residence Patterns There are five common residence patterns that a newly wed couple may adopt. Patrilocal Matrilocal Ambilocal Neolocal Avunculocal (least common)
Residence Patterns Patrilocal residence A residence pattern in which a married couple lives in the locality associated with the husband’s father’s relatives. Common to societies where men are dominant in the role of subsistence patterns. Bride must often move to husbands band, tribe, or community. Bride price is customary here.
Residence Patterns Matrilocal residence A residence pattern in which a married couple lives in the locality associated with the wife’s relatives. Common to horticultural societies. Men do not generally move very far from their native family to join his bride’s family. No compensation is given between either spouse.
Residence Patterns Ambilocal residence A pattern in which a married couple may choose either matrilocal or patrilocal residence. Common among food-foraging groups where subsistence resources are limited and it might be a necessity to travel between families. Compensation is not given between either spouse.
Residence Patterns Neolocal residence A pattern in which a married couple may establish their household in a location apart from either the husband’s or the wife’s relatives. Common to industrial and postindustrial societies where independence is favored.
Residence Patterns Avunculocal residence Residence of a married couple with the husband’s mother’s brother.
Marriage, Family & Households Today. As previously stated marriage, family, and household patterns vary greatly from one culture to the next. Blended families are increasing due to a rise in divorce and re-marry. It is easier than ever to adopt children despite ethnic backgrounds. Increase in households consisting of migrant and temporary workers.