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Look Inside Contexts of Kinship

Contexts of Kinship
An Essay in the Family Sociology of the Gonja of Northern Ghana


Part of Cambridge Studies in Social and Cultural Anthropology

  • Date Published: July 2005
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521017206

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About the Authors
  • In her study of domestic organization in Gonja, a formerly important West African state, now part of Ghana, Esther Goody has concentrated on tracing the interrelationships between political and domestic institutions in a bilateral kinship system, untypical of the area. After outlining the problems which she is seeking to solve and describing the domestic, political and economic context of life in central Gonja, the author examines the several aspects of marriage fundamental to the establishment of domestic groups and their development. The practice of sending children to be reared by kin is then discussed and is related to the strong ties binding kin together however far apart they may live. Dr Goody examines patterns of residence through time, and seeks to relate these to both the political context and the form taken by authority in the kin group. The study concludes with a comparison of the Gonja system with other bilateral and unilineal African kingdoms, and the book is completed by appendices presenting the statistical material gathered during research.

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    Product details

    • Date Published: July 2005
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521017206
    • length: 356 pages
    • dimensions: 233 x 155 x 19 mm
    • weight: 0.5kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    List of tables
    List of illustrations
    Symbols used in the text
    Part I. Contexts and Problems:
    1. Problems
    2. The historical, political and economic setting
    3. Three divisions of central Gonja and their villages
    Part II. Marriage:
    4. Courtship and patterns of marriage: open connubium
    5. Establishing a marriage
    6. The conjugal relationship
    7. The termination of marriage
    Part III. Kinship:
    8. Parents and children
    9. Kinship and sibship
    Part IV. Residence:
    10. Residence: the synchronic view
    11. The developmental cycle
    12. Conclusions

  • Author

    Esther N. Goody, New Hall, Cambridge

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