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Society of OthersKinship and Mourning in a West Papuan Place$
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Rupert Stasch

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780520256859

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520256859.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 24 June 2022

Children and the Contingency of Attachment

Children and the Contingency of Attachment

(p.140) Chapter 4 Children and the Contingency of Attachment
Society of Others

Rupert Stasch

University of California Press

This chapter is concerned with children and their relations with parents or other caring relatives. It explores a moment of futurity: the experience of children as temporal successors to parents' lives. A moment of sexual history is also examined. It then looks at the moment of birth itself, including (in the past) people's occasional contemplation of infanticide. It evaluates the time of child care and companionship in the present, and the creation of attachment. Children as social others are objects of a complex kind of intertemporal, intersubjective consciousness on the part of the parents. Korowai often disagreed over the fate of a particular newborn but they do not consider infanticide itself an immoral act. Korowai experience a social relation between parent and child as a corporeal condition. It is likely that the broad patterns of Korowai parent-child attachment are representative of people's approaches to social attachment at large.

Keywords:   children, infanticide, child care, Korowai, parent-child attachment, newborn, sexual history, companionship

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