Sara - Kinship

Kin Groups and Descent. The Sara combine a cognatic, ancestor-focused, system of kinship with patricians. The term "gir ka" can, depending on the context, mean either "ancestor" or "patrician." A gir ka is any ancestor from which a person is descended in any way. Descendants of a person's ancestors are that person's cognates. Cultural notions specify that such kin should join in each other's work groups, share food, welcome each other as members of their residential group, and in general provide mutual support. Persons who stipulate that they share agnatic descent from an ancestor belong to a "gir ka," with the term here used in the sense of a patrician that has its place of residence, its gir be. Clans were in principle exogamous. Clan members should participate in its funeral ceremonies and other clan affairs, such as the taking of vengeance and sacrifices to the spirit ( besi ; pl. besigi ) associated with the clan. There was absolutely no belief that the different clans in a village were part of a common organization based upon agnatic descent. Similarly, neither the village itself, nor other villages, were conceived of as descent groups bound in a single, pyramidal structure, as was found among the Nuer.

Kinship Terminology. Sara kinship terminology is of the Hawaiian type.

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