Shona - Kinship

Kin Groups and Descent. Patrilineal groups are the basic unit of economic cooperation and, usually, of residence: extended families traditionally shared a homestead or lived in adjacent homesteads. Except in chiefly families, such a group is rarely more than three or four generations in depth, and it is easy for an individual to attach instead to matrilateral relatives. The descendants of a deceased woman may occasionally gather for ritual purposes.

Kinship Terminology. Patrilineal kin are classified according to sex, generation, and seniority by age. Parallel matrilateral kin are accorded the same terms as patrilineal kin. Other matrilateral kin are classified simply by sex.

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