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Navajo People’s Kinship

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Kinship among the Navajo people is prevalent and filled with respect and collaboration throughout their lives. The cooperation is perpetuated by each member of the society, as it plays an important role in joining these families together in harmony. The social organization of the Navajo people is defined by clan which is united by the family ties and residence. This is due to the obligation by which one is born and adopts kinship toward the family. The kinship of the Navajo people follows the women clan lineage that comes into the tribe with a clan name. This system has increased the strength of the people’s relationships, even though they belong to different clans (“Faces of Culture: Kinship and Descent, pt.2").

The Navajo people are proud of their clans, and they highly regard kinship as the key to strengthening their coexistence. The nuclear family is the smallest group which is attached to the larger society of the extended family mostly from the bride clan. The extended family consists of  at least three generations. The Navajo people’s relation is strong, as their systems are organized according to the expected behavioral roles shared by the whole society. The roles in the Navajo society are open to all, thus leaving no room for domination of one partner over another. Although the Navajo society lacks romance, they have a relationship that is full of cooperation and companionship, as they take pride in achievements of other people and feel consideration for others and gentleness towards each other (Colpitts et al.).

The Navajo’s strongest tie is between the siblings due to the lifelong mutual responsibility. They frequently exchange siblings as a form of marriage which strengthens the society’s aspect of kinship for the families are closely knit. The relationship of companionship and cooperation is well shared by siblings with the extended family which plays a large part of their lives.

To conclude, the kinship in the Navajo society goes beyond the blood relatives. By means of  the relationship the society comes together to identify themselves as people. The intricate clan system regards even those people who are not related, as there are ways to make kinship connections (UNC).

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