Kilenge - Kinship



Kin Groups and Descent. In Kilenge, a cognatic descent: principle serves as a basis for recruitment of membership in various groups and organizations. Cognatic descent, wherein the sex of the linking kinsmen does not matter in the reckoning of the descent continuum, entitles people to group Membership and various use rights, but actual membership in a unit depends on a host of possible reasons for activating or severing connections with a unit. People can therefore choose, rather than be assigned, group membership. The most socially significant kin-based group or organization is the naulum, or men's house. Each naulum, manifested in a named cluster of coresident, cognatically related individuals and their spouses, controls land, owns other tangible and intangible property, sponsors ceremonial events and cycles, and provides help and support to members. Naulum may or may not have physical men's house buildings. Individuals may be a primary, active member of one naulum while maintaining secondary membership in one or more other naulum. Other kin-based units include the naulum kuria, which is a subdivision of the naulum; unnamed resource-focused ramages composed of the descendants of the resource establisher; and unnamed sibling groups that provide members with mutual aid.

Kinship Terminology. Kilenge kinship terminology is a Hawaiian-type generational system modified by a form of Sibling ranking, reflecting the importance of seniority in Kilenge culture.

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