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Lecture 8

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Donna Young

Lecture 8  Wednesday November 14: watching Jerusalem Eastside Story (critical for completing 2 ndassignment).***  Exam: 2 hours, last day of class1 or 2 exam questions (essay question and prepare to write it).  2 book is central to essay question and The Nuer for exam questions. She might change it. Segmentary Lineage System  Again, a clan is the largest group of agnates who trace their descent from a common ancestor, and between whom marriage is forbidden. o It has a highly segmented genealogical structure  The little subsets are called lineages hence segmentary lineage system  An entire kinship system traces all kin relationships through both parents (clan = agnates). Everyone can trace relationships to their cognates (through mother and father) and affines (people you have married into). The Nuer call these relationships Mar. o The lineage system, or patrilineage, is concerned with agnatic kin.  We ended last week’s lecture by saying that clans remain constant (or relatively constant), but that lineages are not so constant and are highly dynamic.  E-P page 198: Lineage values are thus essentially relative like tribal values (it depends on where you are), and we suggest later that the processes of lineage segmentation and political segmentation are to some extent co-ordinate. ***THIS QUOTE HAS BEEN ONE OF PROFESSOR’S FAVORITE EXAM DISCUSSION QUESTION SO UNDERSTAND IT.  That is, on the ground, in the real world, it is hard to tell them apart, because they involve the same players, and because the players may explain their actions in either/ or kinship or political terms. When there is a feud, the Finley’s may say they are going with their family that lives in this area to fight the other group (being expressed in terms of family). But they describe different sociological structures. In other words, the distinction is one the anthropologist makes in order to describe the social structures of the Nuer, to describe how the different structures of a society are inter- related and help to reproduce the society over time. This is why we call E- P a structural-functionalist. In this book he describes the ways in which kinship and political structures work together to create Nuer society. (Elsewhere, he also talks about Nuer religion as another structure that contributes to Nuer society).-D.Young  Concerned with politics and kinship.  We have economic, legal (under political, education systems. He explained the different structures, how they work and how they are interrelated which is a primary concern of a structural function. He assumes he part serves a function in that system so it can reproduce overtime. Coordinate Structures: Kinship and Politics Clan Tribe (10 to 12 generations of Dominant Clan/ Diel) (Territory) Politics -Lineages (Buth) -Sections (4 to 6 generations) Structural functionalist Maximum Primary –Secondary-Tertiary Major Minor Minimal  Lineages have names, reciprocal relations (I look after you-you look after me, I come to you in a feud-you come to me in a feud), and ritual symbols. Lineages are marked by gift giving (reciprocity).  Lineage segmentation: ―Me against my brother, my brother and I against the world‖. Expressed in family idiom.  Political Segmentation: ―The enemy of my enemy is my friend‖. War, etc.  Nevertheless, Nuer lineages are not corporate (whereas political are corporate-you have an obligation to it), localized communities, although they are frequently associated with territorial groups (dominant clans). But through fission, lineage groups may go to live in other territories, and it is where one resides that determines one’s political affiliation, or tribal allegiance. (Key sentiment: Home is where the cattle are). ***EXAM QUESTION. Take these 3 (Me against my brother, The enemy of my enemy, Home is where) and explain how each sentiment explain a political system even though they may be related)  It is only in reference to rules of exogamy, certain ritual activities, and to a
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