Kin Groups and Descent. Although the domestic group is based on agnatic ties, and even as Hausa society is patriarchal, descent is basically bilateral; only the political aristocracy and urban intelligentsia observe strict patrilineality, everyone else practicing bilaterality.
Kinship Terminology. Hausa kinship terminology cannot be classified according to standard anthropological categories because of the number of alternative usages. For example, a man's siblings and his parallel or cross cousins are called 'yanuwa (children of my mother); cross cousins, however, are also referred to and addressed as abokan wasa (joking relations), and special terms distinguishing elder and younger brother and sister may also be applied to both parallel and cross cousins.