Page 2 of 7

Posted: Sat Oct 28, 2006 1:17 pm
by TomHChappell
guitarplayer wrote:
vegfarandi wrote:I don't quite understand what is being asked about here...

Your con/natlang's kinterms most obviously :mrgreen:. Like, what's the word for dad, mom, brother, uncle, aunt etc. Plus some extra information about how other langs handle this.


As an example of some of that "extra information":
leonsherlock wrote:Thank you very much for showing me how the hawaiian system works. It's really fascinating!

I forgot to mention, about the "Hawaiian system".---
Since not only your father's brother, but also your mother's brother, is your "father"; and not only your mother's sister, but also your father's sister, is your "mother":
Your father's son, your mother's son, your father's brother's son, your mother's sister's son, your father's sister's son, and your mother's brother's son, are all your "brother"; and your father's daughter, your mother's daughter, your father's brother's daughter, your mother's sister's daughter, your father's sister's daughter, and your mother's brother's daughter, are all your "sister".

The same applies to each of your parents, of course. That is, your father's father's son, your father's mother's son, your father's father's brother's son, your father's mother's sister's son, your father's father's sister's son, and your father's mother's brother's son, are all your father's "brother", and hence are all your "father". Therefore, the son of any of them is your "brother".

----

The "Sudanese" system, on the other hand, differentiates carefully.
Father, mother, father's father, father's mother, mother's father, and mother's mother are six separate terms. Father, mother, father's brother, father's sister, mother's brother, and mother's sister are six separate terms. Brother, sister, husband, wife, brother's wife, sister's husband, husband's brother, husband's sister, wife's brother, and wife's sister are ten separate terms. Son, daughter, brother's son, brother's daughter, sister's son, and sister's daughter are six separate terms. Son, daughter, son's wife, and daughter's husband are four separate terms. Son, daughter, son's son, son's daughter, daughter's son, and daughter's daughter, are six separate terms.

In the Sudanese system, as in the ancient German system, one's tertiary-or-more-distant relatives are classified according to which of one's grandparents they are most closely related to.

-------

Some people sometimes call some kinship systrems "classificatory". This is actually a somewhat "Eurocentric" term. From the point of view of most kinship systems, most other kinship systems are to some degree "classificatory".
As a general guideline (but there are plenty of exceptions, some of which are rather "radical"), the peoples who now have advanced technology and heavy industry and global military and economic "clout" have kinship systems which express fewish distinctions (relative to the other peoples') but express them rather thoroughly and systematically (relative to the other peoples'); whereas the peoples who until recently have been "poor" or "uneducated" or not in close contact with much of the rest of the world, have kinship systems which express manyish distinctions (relative to other peoples') but do not express most of them as thoroughly and systematically as those of "advanced" peoples.

-----

Adpihi:

One kind of "classificatory" kinship system forms the basis of the "prescriptive marriage systems". That is, having this kind of kinship system does not require that the people have a prescriptive marriage system, but having a prescriptive marriage system does require that the people have this kind of kinship system.

This is the kind in which a Father's Brother is a Father and a Mother's Sister is a Mother (without regard to which is older).

In such a system, your "parallel cousin" (your Father's Brother's or your Mother's Sister's child) is your sibling, but your "cross cousin" (your Father's Sister's child or your Mother's Brother's child) is _not_ your sibling.

The system may or may not distinguish between the two kinds of cross-cousin.

It also may or may not distinguish between a Wife's Brother and a Sister's Husband; or between a Husband's Sister and a Brother's Wife.

But it won't distinguish between a Father's Wife and a Mother, nor between a Mother's Husband and a Father. And, it won't distinguish between a full-brother and a half-brother and a step-brother; these will all just be "Brother".

-----

Why am I discussing that system without providing the vocabulary for it? Because I expect to make Adpihi have such a system, but I haven't gotten around to generating any of the vocabulary yet. (Well, I do have a word, but I haven't decided what it means yet.)
:roll: :oops:

Thanks,
-----
Tom H.C. in MI

Posted: Sat Oct 28, 2006 3:43 pm
by Radagast
In Mixe you call your grandchildren and you grandparents the same term.

Posted: Sat Oct 28, 2006 3:51 pm
by TomHChappell
Radagast wrote:In Mixe you call your grandchildren and you grandparents the same term.

Is Mixe a natlang? Where is it spoken? What family does it belong to?

If I go with the simplest system I have thought of for Adpihi, a man will call his mother's father and his daughter's son by the same term, and a woman will call her father's mother and her son's daughter by the same term. (The other grandparents and grandchildren will be disginguished, however.)
The other interesting identity in this system is between some quaternary relatives; for instance a man will call his wife's brother's wife's father and his mother's brother's wife's brother by the same term.

But I haven't decided yet to go with that simple system.

-----
Tom H.C. in MI

Posted: Sat Oct 28, 2006 3:51 pm
by Rik
Gevey family terms - the most widely used are shown in bold italics. Gevey society seems to view families as "moveable feasts" - you don't need to be correctly related to be called moeme or zgatise. In fact younger children routinely call everyone "uncle", "aunt", "cousin" and "kid" (basate), something that gets replaced in adulthood with an over-reliance on the "extended family" terms, even for blood relations.

Immediate family:
bizhvete (bizhvet) grandfather
moemete (moemet) grandmother
nonhete (nonhet) grandparent
bizhve (bizhev) father, dad
moeme (moem) mother
nonhe (nong) parent
buukrhe (buukehrh) husband, partner
tothpe (tothap) wife, partner
voene (voent) spouse
huspe (husep) brother
lozde (lozad) sister
husplozde (husplozad) sibling
vlefre (vlefehr) son
joose (joosk) daughter

Wider family:
rhaajise (rhaajisk) cousin (male)
rhaajafe (rhaajaf) cousin (female)
rhaaje (rhaaj) cousin (both sexes)
zgatise (zgatisk) uncle
zgatafe (zgataf) aunt
zgate (zgat) uncle, aunt
karise (karisk) nephew
karafe (karaf) niece
kare (kar) nephew, niece

loifuhrhe (loifuhrh) very old person (both sexes)
zwibecye ubulhizhe (ye ubulhizhe zwibeceey) teenager (both sexes)
dhoire (dhoir) child, infant (both sexes)

"Extended" family
cuklame (cuklam) anyone older than self (both sexes)
shlumfoeddhe (shlumfoedadh) anyone roughly the same age (both sexes)
basate (basat) anyone younger than self (both sexes)
dhofte wanhizhe (ye wanhizhe dhoft) best friend (both sexes)
ohsle (ohsal) friend (both sexes)
shlumzdeje (shlumzdej) lover - does not need to be literal (both sexes)

loife (loif) man
moemuhrhe (moemuhrh) tribe mother, group mother
gyane (gyan) woman
moemaelhe (moemael) bride, maiden
rapte (rapt) boy
vuefne (vuefant) girl

Posted: Sat Oct 28, 2006 4:03 pm
by Radagast
TomHChappell wrote:
Radagast wrote:In Mixe you call your grandchildren and you grandparents the same term.

Is Mixe a natlang? Where is it spoken? What family does it belong to?



It's a mexican natlang of the Mixe-Zoquean family.

Posted: Sat Oct 28, 2006 9:44 pm
by Chuma
mæi_^ = mother
dudu = father
tAj\e = brother
kyso = sister
j\}sen = sibling

The first two are so to speak derived from baby talk. The others are contractions of

tade j\}sen = boy sibling
kyso j\}sen = girl sibling
g} neu_^sa = person beside

(I'm trying to use some sort of Z-SAMPA here, with moderate success. I'm not sure I understand all of the descriptions... I hope at least the æ ligature is readable. The _^ is supposed to mark a semivowel, or the "weaker part" of a diphton. If anyone knows a better way to write it, please let me know.)

Concerning marriages, I'm considering a hugely patriarchal system, using genitive and possessive case:

voi_^o ges pene = the wife of the man (the woman belonging to the man)
pene vAla voîo = the husband of the woman (the man who the woman belongs to)

My conlang doesn't yet have any words for secondary relatives, but you could possibly form expressions from the primary ones, using the dedative case (similar to english "of"):

mæi_^ ha dudu = mother of father
mæi_^ ha mæi_^ = mother of mother
etc.

Compare with my natnatlang (as in "native natural language") swedish:

mor = mother (dated)
far = father (dated)
farmor = father's mother
mormor = mother's mother
etc.

As you can see, it's the other way around. The way I do it in my conlang is probably less practical, but it happens to fit with the grammar.

But there are some serious problems when trying to build further. If you want to say "mother of father of mother", you might try to use
mæi_^ ha dudu a mæi_^
(the words "ha" and "a" have the same meaning, like "a" / "an" in english)
but then you would be making a mistake, because both the dedative constructions would be describing to the first word. So you'd be saying "mother of father and of mother", and hopefully there is no such person.

I'm not quite sure what to do about this problem. Ideas appreciated.

Posted: Sat Oct 28, 2006 9:47 pm
by mavonduri
TomHChappell wrote:
mavonduri wrote:--- genetic kin ---
Father- ekti
Mother- ac'ta
Older Brother- edos ešto
Older Sister- edos asti
Younger Brother- eteôs ešto
Younger Sister- eteôs asti
Son- icto
Daughter- ec'da

--- fictive kin ---
Husband- aekt
Wife- eoc'di

All of these words were derived from the root āk'het, meaning "a member of a family or clan"

Thanks. What's the name of your conlang?



it's called Cénárol.

kindred

Posted: Sun Oct 29, 2006 1:21 pm
by tyrian
Here's a list of kin-terms I've been working on (one of the first things I've done with a new conlang I'm developing). In context, native speakers are considered 'native' by uterine descent, in relation to an apical ancestor.

Apical ancestor: oun
Maternal G-G-Grandmother: ouma
Maternal Great-Grandmother: ruama
Maternal Grandmother: rume
Mother: fueme

These degrees of kinship change and are not fixed: when the maternal g-g-grandmother dies, the maternal great-grandmother (her daughter) replaces her as 'ouma' (as closest in descent to 'oun').

Mother: eme/ga (used intimately between child/mother, regardless of mother's relationship to 'oun')
Father: fuethua
Paternal Grandfather: ad
Siblings (regardless of gender): eahuafue


other Grandparents/elder relatives/respected members of society: usa
Maternal uncle/aunt: eboke
Paternal uncle/aunt, first cousins, close friends: aulisar
Smallest family unit, 'mother and child': ganea

Niece/Nephew: ione
Son/daughter: ut or fuenat

Everything's still scattered, but the plan was to show that proximity to a 'totem' ancestor created important familial distinctions. Not sure that's come across as clearly as I wanted: I should revise it some point soonish.

Posted: Sun Oct 29, 2006 4:10 pm
by Salmoneus
Can I point out to everyone that the Eskimo system that we use, with father/uncle contrasts, cross-cousin/parallel-cousin mergers, lack of distinction between agnatic and uterine uncles and aunts and so forth, is only found in about 10% of human societies, and generally only high-tech or very-low-resource ones? Yt it seems almost universal in fantasy and sci-fi.



Here's the system for the concity of Kesper:

Lower classes:
Both sides:
1. sibling or parallel cousin
2. child of (1)
3. spouse
4. member of same tribe
5. child or grandchild

Mother’s side:
6. Other female on mother’s side, including uncle’s wife, or female relative of spouse
7. Other male on mother’s side, does not include aunt’s husband, or male relative of spouse

Father’s side:
8. Male cross-cousin on father’s side
9. Female cross-cousin on father’s side
10. Male of parent’s generation on father’s side
11. Female of parent’s generation or prior on father’s side
12. Direct male ancestor on father’s side, or male of grandparent generation on father’s side
13. More distant relative descended by male line from (12)
14. Male child of (8)
15. Female child of (9)



Upper classes:
Both sides:
1. sibling or parallel cousin
2. child of (1)
3. spouse
4. member of same tribe
5. member of same phratry
6. member of same genos
7. member of same fraternity
8. person who grew up in same village or estate
9. child or grandchild of woman
10. child of man
11. consort
12. consort’s younger consort
13. consort’s older consort
14. child of (13) or (14)

Mother’s side:
15. Mother
16. Other female on mother’s side, including uncle’s wife, or female relative of spouse, and also consort of mother’s consort, or female child of consort of mother’s consort, or female grandchild of consort of mother’s consort, or mother’s consort’s sister, or mother’s consort’s sister’s daughter, or mother’s consort’s daughter
17. Other male on mother’s side, does not include aunt’s husband, or male relative of spouse, or mother’s consort, or mother’s consort’s male child or grandchild, or mother’s consort’s brother or brother’s son, or mother’s consort’s consort’s male child

Father’s side:
18. Father (usually female)
19. Male cross-cousin on father’s side
20. Female cross-cousin on father’s side
21. Male of parent’s generation on father’s side, including father’s consort
22. Other female of parent’s generation or prior on father’s side
23. Direct male ancestor on father’s side, or male of grandparent generation on father’s side
24. More distant relative descended by male line from (23)
25. Male child of (19) or
26. Female child of (20)

Posted: Sun Oct 29, 2006 5:57 pm
by Nuntarin
Salmoneus wrote:Can I point out to everyone that the Eskimo system that we use, with father/uncle contrasts, cross-cousin/parallel-cousin mergers, lack of distinction between agnatic and uterine uncles and aunts and so forth, is only found in about 10% of human societies, and generally only high-tech or very-low-resource ones? Yt it seems almost universal in fantasy and sci-fi.

This is a good point. I have made my system a little different from the Eskimo system, but I think I've been afraid to make it too different and I should work on that.

Posted: Sun Oct 29, 2006 6:19 pm
by Salmoneus
Nuntar: unfortunately, it's hard to integrate into writing for an English audience. Terms like 'father/uncle', 'cross-cousin' and 'mother/aunt/cross-cousin-on-the-uterine-side' are hard to make make sense to normal people, I think. Family is one of the things people really struggle to see alternatives in.



Tom (in reply to PM):
My data is from reading various net things about cultural anthropology concepts. In particular, I would recommend http://anthro.palomar.edu/tutorials/cultural.htm and http://www.umanitoba.ca/anthropology/tutor/index.html


Eskimo is usually found where there are strong nuclear families. The two times this normally occurs are a) modern post-industrial liberal society, and b) hunter-gatherers in harsh conditions with a lack of resources. If you think about it, when Eskimo children grow up and get their own families, they need to get their own igloo. The nuclear families look after each other, while being supported by neighbours on both sides of the family.
Whereas small islands tend toward ambilineal systems that produce Hawai'ian naming, and stratified cultures with complex social responsibilities tend to Sudanese. Iroquios, Omaha and Crow go with strong unilineal descent - Omaha with very strong agnatic, Crow with strong uterine, and Iroquois with either.

Posted: Sun Oct 29, 2006 6:31 pm
by Nuntarin
Salmoneus wrote:Nuntar: unfortunately, it's hard to integrate into writing for an English audience. Terms like 'father/uncle', 'cross-cousin' and 'mother/aunt/cross-cousin-on-the-uterine-side' are hard to make make sense to normal people, I think. Family is one of the things people really struggle to see alternatives in.

But I want my conlang to be as realistic as I can make it given the limitations of my knowledge, not to purposely limit it because of the difficulties of translation. After all, depending on the context I can probably use the English terms, perhaps with explanatory footnotes, when writing conworld fiction in English.

Whereas small islands tend toward ambilineal systems that produce Hawai'ian naming, and stratified cultures with complex social responsibilities tend to Sudanese. Iroquios, Omaha and Crow go with strong unilineal descent - Omaha with very strong agnatic, Crow with strong uterine, and Iroquois with either.

That, I guess, is another of my problems -- none of the systems really seems to fit my conculture all that well. Which probably means the conculture isn't realistic either :(

Posted: Sun Oct 29, 2006 8:30 pm
by tvdxer
Nice list. (I like lists :) )

--- genetic kin ---
Father - pa
Mother - ma
Older Brother - alnoshpir
Older Sister - alshampir
Younger Brother - shanoshpir
Younger Sister - shashampir
Son - kumopa
Daughter - kumoma
--- fictive kin ---
Husband - mafnosh
Wife - mafsham
Godfather - paòijat
Godmother - maòijat
Godson - kumopaòijat
Goddaughter - kumomaòijat
Blood-Brother - - ?

Also:

Grandfather - paòpa (paternal) paòma (maternal)
Grandmother - maòpa (paternal) maòma (maternal)
Aunt or Uncle: piroma (maternal) piropa (paternal)
Aunt - shampiroma (maternal) shampiropa (paternal)
Uncle - noshpiroma (maternal) noshpiropa (paternal)
Cousin - kanj ("kinsman / kinswoman") in common speech or (for example) kumomaòshampiroma if one wishes to be speak technically ("daughter of maternal aunt)
In-law (brother or sister): piròimaf

Posted: Sun Oct 29, 2006 11:44 pm
by tvdxer
By the way, here are the base terms:


KANJ - "kin", most often "cousin".
KUM - offspring. Can also be used as a verb in a sense similar to "derive" or "born of"; e.g. "FreeBSD kum Unix" - "FreeBSD is derived / comes from from Unix"
MA - mother
PA - father
PIR - sibling

al - higher, above
maf - marriage
nosh - male
òijat - "by holiness"
sha - lesser, lower, below
sham - female

Posted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 12:46 pm
by TomHChappell
Salmoneus wrote:---CUT---
Tom (in reply to PM):
My data is from reading various net things about cultural anthropology concepts. In particular, I would recommend http://anthro.palomar.edu/tutorials/cultural.htm and http://www.umanitoba.ca/anthropology/tutor/index.html

Oh, wow! :o :D Those are great! :D 8) Thank you.
I recommend everyone on this thread look at some of that second URL.

Salmoneus wrote:Eskimo is usually found where there are strong nuclear families. The two times this normally occurs are a) modern post-industrial liberal society, and b) hunter-gatherers in harsh conditions with a lack of resources. If you think about it, when Eskimo children grow up and get their own families, they need to get their own igloo. The nuclear families look after each other, while being supported by neighbours on both sides of the family.
---CUT---

(BTW shouldn't that be "Inuit" instead of "Eskimo"?)

That would explain why it occurs in so much science fiction and fantasy. Both the producers and the consumers of these stories tend to originate from and live in "modern post-industrial liberal societies"; and to speak languages like English and Spanish which have such "Eskimo-type" kinship systems.


Nuntarin wrote:
Salmoneus wrote:Nuntar: unfortunately, it's hard to integrate into writing for an English audience. Terms like 'father/uncle', 'cross-cousin' and 'mother/aunt/cross-cousin-on-the-uterine-side' are hard to make make sense to normal people, I think. Family is one of the things people really struggle to see alternatives in.

But I want my conlang to be as realistic as I can make it given the limitations of my knowledge, not to purposely limit it because of the difficulties of translation. After all, depending on the context I can probably use the English terms, perhaps with explanatory footnotes, when writing conworld fiction in English.

Whereas small islands tend toward ambilineal systems that produce Hawai'ian naming, and stratified cultures with complex social responsibilities tend to Sudanese. Iroquios, Omaha and Crow go with strong unilineal descent - Omaha with very strong agnatic, Crow with strong uterine, and Iroquois with either.

That, I guess, is another of my problems -- none of the systems really seems to fit my conculture all that well. Which probably means the conculture isn't realistic either :(

Don't give up yet!

Take a look at
http://www.umanitoba.ca/anthropology/tutor/kinterms/termsys.html
(not-too-deep into one of those references Salmoneus provided).

There are six basic "super-types" ("types of types"?) of kinship systems; chances are one of them will do for your conculture.

At the top end or bottom end of economic and technological power, the "Eskimo" (shouldn't that be "Inuit"?) system will work.

Otherwise the "Sudanese" system can probably be made to "fit" (sort of) just about any conculture, (especially an intricately stratified one), since anthropologists don't yet have a firm understanding of what its genesis and/or effects are IRL.

My conculture is going to have an Iroquois-type system.

The Omaha and the Crow systems are modifications of the Iroquois system in which "skewing" occurs; past a certain point kinterms are "diagonal", applying either to everybody in a certain matriline (Crow) or to everybody in a certain patriline (Omaha).

One of the systems in Salmoneus's references modifies one of the pure types by, past a certain point, distinguishing kin as "on my father's side" or "on my mother's side". IRL historically, Germanic societies (including, if I'm not mistaken, Old English society) went one better than this; past a certain point, kin were distinguished as being "on my father's father's side" or "on my father's mother's side" or "on my mother's father's side" or "on my mother's mother's side". You might give such a modification a try.


If you choose a kinship system that goes with matrilineal and matrilocal society, you obviously should consider having your society be mostly matrilineal and matrilocal. Such societies usually have the following two characteristics (possibly among others);

1) Women do economically important work that most men don't do. (For instance, a war party may not be able to set out until the women have voted to provide them with the moccasins and the corn they will need. Prototypically in such a society, at every level the "leader" is a man, but at every level the choosing of the leader is heavily influenced by the opinions of the women -- usually at least as much as, and sometimes more than, the opinions of the men.)

2) The society is mostly sedentary (i.e. not nomadic).


Other characteristics which make a matrilineal society more likely:

3) Upon marriage a man doesn't move in with his wife, nor she with him; instead he keeps living with his mother, and she keeps living with hers. (This could sometimes be one meaning of the term "matrilocal".) So a child's adult male caregiver is likelier his/her mother's oldest brother than his/her father.

4) Men's work requires them to be absent from their homes for extended periods of time. Thus husbands can't be objectively more than 50% certain their wive's offspring are in fact their own. If that is so a man may be more confident his sister's offspring are related to him than that his wive's offspring are. So a man's heir is likelier to be his oldest sister's oldest son than his wife's oldest son.

-----
Tom H.C. in MI

Posted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 1:09 pm
by TomHChappell
tvdxer wrote:---CUT---
Blood-Brother - - ?
---CUT---

Perhaps some equivalent to "Oath-Brother"?

The "modern" marriage vows -- and, indeed, other marriage vows from Medieval and Dark Age times -- seem, to me, to more resemble the vows taken by blood-brothers, than the terms of more ancient marriage contracts.

Are you familiar with a typical blood-brother-hood bonding ritual?

Each man might awake and eat the other's habitual breakfast. This might be accompanied by oaths, something along the lines of "as long as I can eat, you can eat. If you go hungry, I go hungry too."
The two men might exchange names. That is, if Tom and Dave were becoming blood-brothers, then, after the ceremony, the one previously known as Tom would now be known as Dave, and the one previously known as Dave would now be known as Tom.
The two men would probably exchange weapons; they might exchange belts, if their weapons were usually hung on their belts. They would say words to the effect "all of your enemies are now my enemies".
The men would cut themselves enough to bleed, and mix their blood; and might say words to the effect of "henceforth whoever wounds you spills my blood".
They would rub some contrasting-color substance into the cuts; a light-skinned man might put gunpowder in his cut (if he had any gunpowder), a dark-skinned man might put some lighter kind of powder in his. After the cut healed, this would be a tattoo. In a dangerous or hostile situation, a man could "innocently and accidentally" flash this tattoo, thus warning his possible enemy, "half of me might be behind you".
They might take some sacrificial animal and cut it in half, lay the two halves on the ground, and walk a figure-eight path around them, following in one another's footsteps. This animal might be sacrificed to a god or some gods, or be cooked and served for a feast, or both.
There would typically be more words to the oath; say, while each held a knifepoint against the other's skin, they might say something like, "If this man is at my back, I am safe. If this man is with my women, they are safe.".
Some of this would, for preference, be done in front of witnesses.

The RL Chinese are supposed to have conceived of marriage as a kind of military alliance. It seems to me that the Christian church's Medieval modification of older forms of marriage -- which were mostly economic matters between one family and another -- was modeled somewhat on the "blood-brother" ritual. The Church's purpose was to make marriage a matter between individuals rather than between families. (Part of their program to make inheritance a matter of the personal choice of the bequestor, so that people could be encouraged to bequeath valuables to the Church.) They kept certain things -- such as the wives' being obedient to their husbands -- that obviously have no place in a "blood-brother" ritual; they also kept some that happened to be common to both the blood-brother ritual and the older forms of marriage, such as feeding one another cake.

-----
Any thoughts?

-----
Tom H.C. in MI

Posted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 1:57 pm
by Nuntarin
TomHChappell wrote:If you choose a kinship system that goes with matrilineal and matrilocal society, you obviously should consider having your society be mostly matrilineal and matrilocal.

It definitely isn't, and I'm not sure what I said that made you think I was choosing that type of kinship system? I'm even more confused now :?

Posted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 3:00 pm
by TomHChappell
Nuntarin wrote:
TomHChappell wrote:If you choose a kinship system that goes with matrilineal and matrilocal society, you obviously should consider having your society be mostly matrilineal and matrilocal.

It definitely isn't,

As I recall yours is highly patrilineal and patrilocal, not to say patriarchal.

Nuntarin wrote:and I'm not sure what I said that made you think I was choosing that type of kinship system?

Nothing, ttbomk.

Nuntarin wrote:I'm even more confused now :?

Perhaps I should have said "one" instead of "you"?

In your case, replace "patri" with "matri".

Are you aware of what cultural characteristics correlate, statistically, with "patrilineal" and/or "patrilocal"? I have trouble remembering the whole list.

Salmoneus's references seem to indicate 60% of the world's RL cultures are patrilineal and patrilocal.


Among other things;

1) If society is not sedentary, they probably aren't going to be matrilineal or matrilocal; so they're likelier to be patrilineal or patrilocal.

2) If women do not have a monopoly on any economically-important work, the society is probably not going to be matrilineal or matrilocal; so they're likelier to be patrilineal or patrilocal.

3) If after marriage wives move in with their husbands -- whether in a new location or in their husband's birth-home -- that cuts down on the likelihood that the society is matrilineal. As a result -- although this may simply be due to the statistical fact that most cultures are patrilineal -- it raises the likelihood that the society is patrilineal.
3a) If it's a new location the new couple moves into, that also means the society can't be matrilocal.

4) If husbands usually spend most of their time near their wives, and married couples sleep together (at least in the same house, (e.g. if the man has many wives), if not in the same room (e.g. if he has only a few wives)) most nights, and most husbands don't regularly have to spend extended periods away from their wives, then husbands can usually be objectively more than 50% sure that their wive's offspring are their own offspring. Thus it makes more sense for a man to gamble that his wife's son is his own son, than to rely on the more certain, but more distant, relationship with his sister's son. Therefore the society is less likely to be matrilineal; and more likely to be patrilineal.


-------------

I'm sure that's not all there is to it.

Among other possibilities;

5) If warfare is important, but not an overriding and disrupting influence.
5a) Especially if men can contribute to warfare without the permission of the women.

6) If some economically important asset is inherited from fathers by sons.
6a) This is likelier if men have a monopoly on some economically vital activity -- for instance, hunting big game.
6b) If the asset involved is land, for instance, then this is a patrilocal system.

----

But I just can't remember the whole list. It's easier for me to go through the non-patrilineal, non-patrilocal systems and look for their correlates, and then say "and if none of those apply, the system is probably patrilineal and patrilocal".

-----------

Look through Salmoneus's references for better help.

------

I hope that helps.

--------
Tom H.C. in MI

Posted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 3:45 pm
by Salmoneus
Also, land prices. High land prices = starvation pressures if a family grows too large. Females have babies, so poor families want to get rid of their babies by killing or selling them. Women become unimportant, as everyone has plenty of them. Matrilinear and matriarchal societies very unlikely.

Low land prices = not enough people to work the land, especially if there's war as well. Everyone wants more women in their family, because they produce large families. Hence the price of female slaves is high, and women are relatively important in the family, because they're in high demand. Matriarchal and matrilinear societies more likely. Also, polygyny (whereas (very) high land prices are associated with polyandry).

Eg the west african empires like the ashanti - polygamous and matrilinear.

Posted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 6:16 pm
by Nuntarin
TomHChappell wrote:As I recall yours is highly patrilineal and patrilocal, not to say patriarchal.

Yes, though perhaps less so in Imperial/post-Imperial times than in the Argundran period, and I do want to develop my kinship system as far back as the Proto-Argundran roots. (Still, I'm curious where you're getting so much information about my conpeople from!)

I hope that helps.

Yes, it does. Thank you.

Salmoneus wrote:Also, land prices. High land prices = starvation pressures if a family grows too large. Females have babies, so poor families want to get rid of their babies by killing or selling them. Women become unimportant, as everyone has plenty of them. Matrilinear and matriarchal societies very unlikely.

That's also very interesting. Unfortunately, I don't know how I would determine whether land prices are low or high either.....

Posted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 7:57 pm
by TomHChappell
Nuntarin wrote:
TomHChappell wrote:As I recall yours is highly patrilineal and patrilocal, not to say patriarchal.

Yes, though perhaps less so in Imperial/post-Imperial times than in the Argundran period, and I do want to develop my kinship system as far back as the Proto-Argundran roots. (Still, I'm curious where you're getting so much information about my conpeople from!)

You PMed me

and other related URLs.
The people descend from pre-Imperial nomads. "Old Testament" (patriarchal times, especially) Hebrews, and Islamic-ascendancy Arabs, are the best-known RL examples of nomads; and they were quite patrilineal.
Several of your con-historical kings are succeeded by their sons in the Empire-Rising times. This strongly argues that they were patrilineal; or at least that the royals were.

Also, earlier on this thread,
Nuntarin wrote:The Arêndrons have a bit of a strange system for secondary genetic kin that isn't quite like any Earth culture I know of, but it makes sense to me. It used to be the case that in most families, the brothers would continue living together, and so "father's brother's son" is merged with "brother", and similarly with "father's brother's daughter" and "sister", and there are different terms (xelin and xelûn) for one's other cousins. There are also separate terms for "father's brother" and "mother's brother" (can't remember them though) and "father's father" and "mother's father", but "father's sister" and "mother's sister" are merged, as are "father's mother" and "mother's mother".

This suggests that marriages might have been virilocal -- the wives moving in with the husbands. It also suggests, of course, that the grown men remained with their birth-home.
Your remark doesn't say so, but I suspect your society was polygynous -- one man might have several wives at the same time, though a woman would have only one husband at a time. If so, men might have felt a closer kinship with brothers who also had the same mother, as well as the same father, than with brothers who had the same father but a different mother. One of Salmoneus's references' examples has such a system; very patrilineal, but different words for "child of both my parents" from "child of my father".


Nuntarin wrote:
TomHChappell wrote:I hope that helps.

Yes, it does. Thank you.

Thanks for saying so! :)

-----
Tom H.C. in MI

Posted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 8:31 pm
by Lyhoko Leaci
--- genetic kin ---
Father = Pang
Mother = Manj
Brother = Gaga
Sister = Ajij
Son = Gizer
Daughter = Jëzer
--- fictive kin ---
Husband = Kutgüna
Wife = Kutjän
God~ is not used, neither is Blood~

There is also 2 words for cousin, Loja (if a girl), and Löga (if a boy).

To name people not shown here, combine different terms using "egu". For example: Grandfather is either "Manj egu pang" (mother's father), or "Pang egu pang" (father's father)

Interesting info: Husband is Güna and Bride is Jän, while the prefix Kut means Again, so Kutgüna literally means "to be a groom again", while Kutjän means "to be a bride again". Also, Ugügüthke is Baby, formed from combining the words Ugüga, Little, and Züthke, Person, forming "little person".

Posted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 10:30 pm
by Downtimer
Salmoneus wrote:Can I point out to everyone that the Eskimo system that we use, with father/uncle contrasts, cross-cousin/parallel-cousin mergers, lack of distinction between agnatic and uterine uncles and aunts and so forth, is only found in about 10% of human societies, and generally only high-tech or very-low-resource ones? Yt it seems almost universal in fantasy and sci-fi.


Could you translate that for me into plain English? :oops:

Low land prices = not enough people to work the land, especially if there's war as well. Everyone wants more women in their family, because they produce large families. Hence the price of female slaves is high, and women are relatively important in the family, because they're in high demand. Matriarchal and matrilinear societies more likely. Also, polygyny (whereas (very) high land prices are associated with polyandry).

Eg the west african empires like the ashanti - polygamous and matrilinear.


I don't know... if everone wants women just because they can produce large families, doesn't that create an environment in which women are thought of as baby-making machines? I mean, I guess that's better than an environment where women are thought of as a burden, but still...

Also, just because a society is matrilineal doesn't mean they think anything of women. Example: the ancient Hebrews. Long ago, they decided that someone is a Jew only if his/her mother is a Jew, because that's the only biological parent one can be sure about. The idea behind this, of course, was that women are sluts and can't be trusted to be faithful to their husbands; the culture was very patriarchal. Even though most people (I hope) no longer believe such a thing, the custom remains in the religion to this day.

What I've read is that harsh climates result in societies where women have lower status, because a lot more people die, and women have to have more children to keep the population from dwindling, and are thus thought of more as baby-making machines, since many have to spend their reproductive lives pregnant or nursing. Whereas in a benign climate, women are more free to do things outside the home because they can afford to have fewer children.

Posted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 11:28 pm
by tvdxer
TomHChappell wrote:
tvdxer wrote:---CUT---
Blood-Brother - - ?
---CUT---

Perhaps some equivalent to "Oath-Brother"?

The "modern" marriage vows -- and, indeed, other marriage vows from Medieval and Dark Age times -- seem, to me, to more resemble the vows taken by blood-brothers, than the terms of more ancient marriage contracts.

Are you familiar with a typical blood-brother-hood bonding ritual?

Each man might awake and eat the other's habitual breakfast. This might be accompanied by oaths, something along the lines of "as long as I can eat, you can eat. If you go hungry, I go hungry too."
The two men might exchange names. That is, if Tom and Dave were becoming blood-brothers, then, after the ceremony, the one previously known as Tom would now be known as Dave, and the one previously known as Dave would now be known as Tom.
The two men would probably exchange weapons; they might exchange belts, if their weapons were usually hung on their belts. They would say words to the effect "all of your enemies are now my enemies".
The men would cut themselves enough to bleed, and mix their blood; and might say words to the effect of "henceforth whoever wounds you spills my blood".
They would rub some contrasting-color substance into the cuts; a light-skinned man might put gunpowder in his cut (if he had any gunpowder), a dark-skinned man might put some lighter kind of powder in his. After the cut healed, this would be a tattoo. In a dangerous or hostile situation, a man could "innocently and accidentally" flash this tattoo, thus warning his possible enemy, "half of me might be behind you".
They might take some sacrificial animal and cut it in half, lay the two halves on the ground, and walk a figure-eight path around them, following in one another's footsteps. This animal might be sacrificed to a god or some gods, or be cooked and served for a feast, or both.
There would typically be more words to the oath; say, while each held a knifepoint against the other's skin, they might say something like, "If this man is at my back, I am safe. If this man is with my women, they are safe.".
Some of this would, for preference, be done in front of witnesses.

The RL Chinese are supposed to have conceived of marriage as a kind of military alliance. It seems to me that the Christian church's Medieval modification of older forms of marriage -- which were mostly economic matters between one family and another -- was modeled somewhat on the "blood-brother" ritual. The Church's purpose was to make marriage a matter between individuals rather than between families. (Part of their program to make inheritance a matter of the personal choice of the bequestor, so that people could be encouraged to bequeath valuables to the Church.) They kept certain things -- such as the wives' being obedient to their husbands -- that obviously have no place in a "blood-brother" ritual; they also kept some that happened to be common to both the blood-brother ritual and the older forms of marriage, such as feeding one another cake.

-----
Any thoughts?

-----
Tom H.C. in MI


Ah, I get it.

The Tan people don't have any such concept native to their culture. You could explain it as:

Pir òi jatmetngan

or the single word Piròijatmetngan.

Posted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 1:05 pm
by TomHChappell
Salmoneus wrote:---CUT---
... small islands tend toward ambilineal systems that produce Hawai'ian naming, ...
---CUT---

You complained about science-fiction and fantasy usually invoking an "Eskimo-type" system, such as English and Spanish have.

Clearly, in fantasy at least, the other types of systems should probably often have an equal or better claim to that particular conculture.

But I'd like to talk about what circumstances one of the other types would be a better fit to a science-fictional conculture.

On my own, I've come up with only one;
On shipboard, or within a fleet, or on space-stations, or within an asteroid belt, I'd say a "Hawaiian"-style "ambilineal" system would probably be better.
The reasons:
* Resources are scarce;
* Territory is scarce;
* Population is low; but
* Population is close to the maximum the resources and territory can contain.

But on any settled planet, I'd think the Eskimo system would work just fine; unless they are not yet past the phase of settlement where everyone has to work as hard as possible all their lives long just to make sure they can all subsist, or, terraforming is incomplete (or will never be completed) and habitats are, essentially, sprinkled around the planet much the way space-stations and/or ships might be sprinkled around orbits or the asteroid belt or interstellar space.

----------

What do you think?

------

Salmoneus wrote:Also, land prices. High land prices = starvation pressures if a family grows too large. Females have babies, so poor families want to get rid of their babies by killing or selling them. Women become unimportant, as everyone has plenty of them. Matrilinear and matriarchal societies very unlikely.

Low land prices = not enough people to work the land, especially if there's war as well. Everyone wants more women in their family, because they produce large families. Hence the price of female slaves is high, and women are relatively important in the family, because they're in high demand. Matriarchal and matrilinear societies more likely. Also, polygyny (whereas (very) high land prices are associated with polyandry).

Eg the west african empires like the ashanti - polygamous and matrilinear.

Compare Tibet to the Hebrews of patriarchal times.
Tibet is a High-Land-Price situation.
It fits everything you said about High-Land-Price situations except that women have high status and it is matrilinealish and matrilocalish and almost matriarchalish.
Hebrews of Patriarchal times were a Low-Land-Price situation.
They fit everything you said about Low-Land-Price situations except that women have low status and it is patrilineal and patrilocalish and very patriarchal.

-----------------------


Downtimer wrote:
Salmoneus wrote:Can I point out to everyone that the Eskimo system that we use, with father/uncle contrasts, cross-cousin/parallel-cousin mergers, lack of distinction between agnatic and uterine uncles and aunts and so forth, is only found in about 10% of human societies, and generally only high-tech or very-low-resource ones? Yt it seems almost universal in fantasy and sci-fi.

Could you translate that for me into plain English? :oops:

Take a look at the second of the URLs Salmoneus provided in his answer (here in this thread) to my PM.
The "Eskimo system" is like that of modern English and/or modern Spanish.
Different members of ego's nuclear family all have their own kinterm. (Father, Mother, Brother, Sister, Husband, Wife, Son, Daughter are eight separate terms.)
None of these can apply to secondary relatives. (For instance, none of ego's grandfathers nor uncles nor brothers-in-law nor nephews nor fathers-in-law nor sons-in-law nor grandsons are called "Father" nor "Brother" nor "Husband" nor "Son".)
But different kinds of secondary relative do have the same kinterm. For instance, in English:
* "Grandfather" means either parent's father;
* "Uncle" means either parent's brother or either parent's brother-in-law;
* "Brother-in-law" means either "sibling's husband" or "spouse's brother";
* "Nephew" means either "brother's son" or "sister's son";
* "Father-in-law" means either "husband's father" or "wife's father";
* "Grandson" means either "son's son" or "daughter's son".

In a "Sudanese"-type system, each category of secondary relative would have their own kinterm.

OTOH in "Iroquois"-, "Omaha"-, "Crow"-, or "Hawaiian"- -type systems, some of the kinterms for primary relatives would also apply to secondary relatives. Most commonly "father's brother" = "father" and "mother's sister" = "mother".


Downtimer wrote:
Salmoneus wrote:Low land prices = not enough people to work the land, especially if there's war as well. Everyone wants more women in their family, because they produce large families. Hence the price of female slaves is high, and women are relatively important in the family, because they're in high demand. Matriarchal and matrilinear societies more likely. Also, polygyny (whereas (very) high land prices are associated with polyandry).
Eg the west african empires like the ashanti - polygamous and matrilinear.


As you see from the above I didn't quite agree that Salmoneus's "usually" necessarily means "always".


Downtimer wrote:I don't know... if everone wants women just because they can produce large families, doesn't that create an environment in which women are thought of as baby-making machines? I mean, I guess that's better than an environment where women are thought of as a burden, but still...

In fact, usually anything that only women can do that is economically valuable, increases both women's worth and women's power; both on the "marriage market" and on the "labor market". If their worth is a change from a previous condition of less worth, it may take society a while to catch up to the change.
Being able to become mothers and bear offspring is something only women can do. This may, or may not, be seen as an "economic good". Salmoneus suggests that at times it may even be seen as an "economic 'bad'".


Downtimer wrote:Also, just because a society is matrilineal doesn't mean they think anything of women.

Absolutely true. Thanks for pointing that out.


Downtimer wrote:What I've read is that harsh climates result in societies where women have lower status, because a lot more people die, and women have to have more children to keep the population from dwindling, and are thus thought of more as baby-making machines ...

That sounds like total hogwash. (In my not-all-that-well-informed opinion.)
Where did you read that? Was the author just guessing or did he/she/they/it have some actual evidence?

-----

Thanks,

--------

Tom H.C. in MI