Orokolo - Marriage and Family

Marriage. Marriage rules, like many other rules among the Orokolo, are flexible. Most marriages are monogamous, but polygyny is permitted. Traditionally, young men generally married immediately after emerging from the age-grade seclusion associated with male initiation; there was thus a Marriage "season." Young women generally married one of their age mates at this time. It is preferred that women marry outside their lineages but within their villages. Bride-price, in the form of shell ornaments and a live pig, is paid to the wife's family by the husband's, and the two families also exchange shell valuables. After marriage, the bride generally lives with the husband's family, although matrilocal postmarital Residence is not uncommon. Marriages are mostly permanent, although they may be severed by the restitution of shell ornaments.

Domestic Unit. The basic domestic unit is the household, generally consisting of a married couple and their children. In polygynous marriages, both wives live together in the same household. Households often include related individuals, such as widowed parents, unmarried or newly married Siblings, or orphaned children, on a temporary or permanent basis.

Inheritance. Inheritance is normally patrilineal. Socialization. Among the Orokolo, direct coercion of any individual, and most particularly physical coercion, is considered inappropriate behavior. Children are no exception, and, by Western standards, children are indulged. Parents frequently play with children, and they do not order them about; even small children enjoy a considerable freedom of will and action. Children learn by watching and imitating the actions of their elders. They have very few "duties." Young men pass through a series of age grades that traditionally included a period of seclusion lasting some six to twelve months at about the age of 14 or 15. Each age grade was associated with a particular costume. Women have no such age grades, but they do have a recognized age-group membership corresponding to that of men.

User Contributions:

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