Tarahumara - Marriage and Family

Marriage. People who share a lineal ancestor theoretically cannot marry, but in practice this prohibition usually extends only to second cousins because genealogical connections seldom are remembered beyond three generations. Many marriages are arranged, often by special marriage officials; only the Tarahumara most influenced by Jesuit missionaries are married by Catholic priests. Because interaction between unrelated men and women is discouraged, young people often marry several times, until they find compatible spouses, after which their marriages are stable. Polygyny occurs but is rare. Young newlyweds usually move between their natal households until they are economically independent.

Domestic Unit. Households are composed of nuclear families, frequently extended to include relatives of either spouse but seldom of both. Closely related nuclear families often live near one another, sharing food and working cooperatively.

Inheritance. Children inherit equally from both parents. Spouses do not inherit from one another, but surviving spouses often retain some property if there are no surviving children or serve as trustees for property inherited by their small children. During life, parents often give their children livestock and (especially at marriage) fields so they can begin forming separate economic bases.

Socialization. Children enjoy considerable independence and are scolded but seldom struck when they misbehave. A child's older siblings and grandparents share child-rearing duties with the parents. Industriousness, sharing, cooperation, and nonaggression are encouraged. The Tarahumara have no initiation rites or formal educational institutions; children are educated informally by participating in household and community activities. Most children also attend government or Jesuit primary schools, which somewhat disrupt traditional patterns of cultural transmission.

User Contributions:

Report this comment as inappropriate
Dec 25, 2013 @ 11:23 pm
My grandmother was tarahumara I want to register as a tarahumara how can I contact someone about this process. .thank you Nancy
Report this comment as inappropriate
Jun 18, 2018 @ 9:09 am
My great grandmother was Tarahumara, but walked to California after getting orphaned three times. I come from a line of single parents back to her, so her values and worldview are what I inherited. She kept what was important, but otherwise assimilated after being a Rosie in ww2. We are chabochi, Nancy, and that's OK. We can visit chihuahua and share our experience, expertise, and wealth, but we don't belong there and I don't want government or tourists interfering with what little indigenous culture our Raramuri family has retained
Gloria m. ZamoraFfpx
Report this comment as inappropriate
Jan 19, 2019 @ 12:00 am
I have learn my greatmother was tarahumara indian her name was ponesunca ramirez sosa married 1923 died 1929 would like to know where she is buried
Anchi Bocanegra-Hair
Report this comment as inappropriate
Aug 12, 2020 @ 12:12 pm
I Have learned that my grandfather was Tarahumara, his name was Antonio Bocanegra was also known as "Tony". He was born in Mexico on May 09, 1884.
His "Death Record" indicates that he was born on May 12, 1884, maybe was his Christening Date. He dies on April 5, 1967. The border crossing from Mexico at the El Paso port entry on Feb. 15, 1914. He was a twin. He had traveled along en route to Nogales, Sonora, Mexico and his residence was in Parras, Coahuila, Mexico. I was wondering if you have any info on my family line. Can you contact me and let me know the process of obtaining family records or getting connected to local families.
Monica Hernandez
Report this comment as inappropriate
Aug 19, 2022 @ 9:09 am
My great grandmother was Tarahumara. Her name was Innocenta Ramirez Castillo, born in Chihuahua in 1860, died in AZ 1948.

Comment about this article, ask questions, or add new information about this topic: