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A study of matrilineal kin relations in contemporary Minangkabau society of West Sumatra


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, Afrizal 1996 , 'A study of matrilineal kin relations in contemporary Minangkabau society of West Sumatra', Research Master thesis, University of Tasmania.

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For a period, it was argued by analysts that as society develops
wider kin relations are weakened, while ties within a nuclear family are
strengthened. In the case of matrilineal kinship systems, it was argued
that economic change, which involves movement towards a capitalist
economy, weakens the matrilineal descent group and transforms it.
Recently, analysts in the field of family and kinship argue that
despite economic and demographic changes, kinship continues to be
important in providing a support network. Kin remain a source of
economic and social support when people face economic and social
This thesis examines kin relations in contemporary Minangkabau
matrilineal society of West Sumatra, Indonesia. It studies kinship as
providing networks of support. The main question addressed in this
thesis is: Are kin ties weakening in contemporary Minangkabau society?
The extent to which members of matrilineal kin groups who live in both
rural and urban areas exchange financial, labour and social support with
each other is examined. Kin relationships such as that between a
mother's brother and his sister's children are examined, and views of
social responsibilities between a range of kin are also analysed.
The research findings show that although Minangkabau have
undergone significant economic and demographic changes, ties within
matrilineal kin groups are still strong. The members of matrilineal kin
groups continue to exchange financial and labour support and mother's
brothers are still involved in organising marriages and in the
socialisation of their sisters' children. However, the thesis also raises the
problems of limitations to the provision of care and support, and relates
kin-based support to the lack of alternatives in this social setting.
The findings also reveal that it is very important to take account of
both male and female roles within a kin group when examining kin
relations rather than to over emphasise the role of men.

Item Type: Thesis - Research Master
Authors/Creators:, Afrizal
Keywords: Matrilineal kinship
Copyright Holders: The Author
Copyright Information:

Copyright 1996 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright
owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We
would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s).

Additional Information:

Thesis (M.A.)--University of Tasmania, 1996. Includes bibliographical references

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