Kin Groups and Descent. Descent is cognatic, shallow, and flexibly figured so as to allow for relationship of a wide circle of kin. A major distinction is made between "close kin" ( tiki awarua ) and "distant kin" ( ot h o awarua ), where closeness is often equated with coresidence. In this sense, the basis of Piaroa social organization is the cognatic kindreds that reside together. The residential groups are temporary and fluid; they have no true corporate status. Continuity of the residential kindred is founded on a rule of preferential endogamy. This causes the local group to be characterized by multiple overlapping ties, blurring the distinction between consanguine and affine.
Kinship Terminology. The terminological system is of the Dravidian type, which establishes a two-line structure contrasting consanguine from affine in the 1, 0, and —1 generational levels. By way of teknonyms, affinal kin are referred to as consanguines in a show of local group unity.