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Us, RelativesScaling and Plural Life in a Forager World$
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Nurit Bird-David

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780520293403

Published to California Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520293403.001.0001

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Tree of Relatives

Tree of Relatives

(p.90) Downscale 3 Tree of Relatives
Us, Relatives

Nurit Bird-David

University of California Press

This interlude focuses on kinship diagrams. Drawing on the author’s fieldwork experience, it shows the scalar distortion inhering in construction of these “maps” to depict tiny-scale indigenous societies, communities of relatives: partial kinship diagrams (event-focused or otherwise circumscribed) conceal the encompassing community whose members are all close kin, and large inclusive family trees highlight shared ancestors rather than the commensal basis of the community.

Keywords:   Family tree, kinship diagram, fieldwork method, ethnographic genre [scalar biases, hunter-gatherers, South Asian foragers, plural life]

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