Chácobo - Marriage and Family

Marriage. Marriage between parallel cousins is considered incestuous; marriage between cross cousins is the preferential form. Of the possible cross cousins the last choice is the father's sister's daughter. A Chácobo groom realizes that he has been accepted as a future husband when his bride cooks the meat he has previously brought her and they eat it together with manioc flour prepared by her. Parents seldom interfere in their daughter's marriage, unless the groom is considered "lazy." The new couple establish their residence in the house of the woman's parents. The son-in-law is required to help his father-in-law in minimal household tasks. Four or five years later, the couple build their own house and the light noninstitionalized bride-service ends. Although monogamy is the predominant marriage rule, polygyny is frequent for mature men.

Domestic Unit. Although Chácobo constitute temporary uxorilocal extended families, the domestic unit is still the nuclear family. The household tasks that the son-in-law has to perform for his wife's father while living with him do not conflict with the time needed for a young husband to work on his own garden or on his own rubber trails.

Inheritance. After death, Chácobo belongings are either broken or buried with the dead person, except for shotguns and iron tools, which are inherited by a son. Land or ritual privileges are not inherited.

Socialization. Chácobo parents are patient and tolerant, giving their small children great freedom. At the age of 7, whereas boys are allowed to move freely, girls are required to stay home helping their mothers with the daily housework. This pattern of women staying inside the house and men outside it repeats itself throughout the Chácobo life cycle.

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