Tujia - Settlements



Tujia villages may contain anywhere from 100 to upwards of 1,500 people, residing in 20 to 300 households. These are usually located at the foot of a mountain or on the lower slopes, and near a water source. Houses are of wood or a combination of wood, stone, and brick, with a tiled roof following Chinese style. The typical wooden house is two storied. The ground floor serves as the center of daily life. The central room where ancestors are enshrined and worshiped and family ceremonial activities are conducted serves also for entertaining guests. Additional rooms, built to each side of the central room, are subdivided into a kitchen and bedroom area. Seniors dwell in the room to the left, juniors in the room to the right. The second floor provides storage space and bedrooms for the children. The stables, pigsty, chicken coops, and toilet are placed as side structures to the main house. Originally, villages were founded by kin of the same patrilineage, but people from other places were gradually incorporated, so that by now every village is multilineal.


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