Balinese - Kinship

Kin Groups and Descent. Balinese distinguish different types of kinship relationships. Each type, from the smallest to the most inclusive, is described as a group of men, related through a common ancestor, who worship with their families at a common ancestor temple. The group is organized around the performance of rituals twice a year at these temples. The household has a temple in the house yard. The men (and their families) who divide an inheritance have a larger local ancestor temple. These inheritance groups can be joined into larger putative kin groups, which assert, but cannot trace, descent from a common ancestor. A family may be active only in a small, local ancestor group or they may see themselves as part of a series of nested groups with alliances in other parts of the island. Larger kin groups are likely to form and be strong in factionalized areas and times. Kin-group membership is reckoned patrilaterally but matrilateral kinship is also remembered.

Kinship Terminology. Kin terms are Hawaiian or generational with all men of father's generation bilaterally referred to as "father," and so on with mother, cousins, grandparents, and children. Individuals have a teknonym that indicates their gender, caste, and birth order. Children are called by this teknonym and adults are called "father of .. . " or "mother of... " after the birth of their first child. Old people are known as "grandfather or grandmother of.... "

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