Amuzgo - Kinship



Kin Groups and Descent. Nowadays there are no lineage or descent groups, but some patrilineal practices survive in rules of residence and inheritance. In some Amuzgo towns, a social differentiation based on attachment to paternal or maternal groups is still evident, for example, when a child is considered to belong to the family of the mother's father. Kinship unity is strengthened by coresidence in a single household, which unites child-rearing, economic, and kinship functions. Patrilocal residence is the form preferred by newlywed couples, although matrilocal residence also occurs; neolocal residence is infrequent.

Kinship Terminology. Amuzgo terminology has different kinship terms for parents and their siblings and a differentiation based on sex (the Eskimo model). A subdivision by age provides terms denoting older and younger; for example, in cases where Ego is older, a parent's brother will be called "sibling's son," and the reciprocal term "parent's brother" will be used to refer to Ego. The system does not differentiate between the sexes of descendants below Ego's generation.


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