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Incest and Exogamy - Essay Example

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Comparative sociologists studied the functions as well as structural attributes of families, household composition, and family dynamics as did anthropological studies of the era. In addition they well thought-out other emotional and psychological issues like love (Goody p2)…
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Incest and Exogamy
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Incest and Exogamy Answer1 Comparative sociologists studied the functions as well as structural attributes of families, household composition, and family dynamics as did anthropological studies of the era. In addition they well thought-out other emotional and psychological issues like love (Goody p2). Sociologist's main attention was on variations across time as well as national, ethnic, and class lines, they gave little importance studies of across cultures.
The incest taboo can disclose the real meaning of society because it is responsible for constituting society. The ambiguity of the incest taboo that has for so long confused anthropologists is still not reveled whilst it is seen as establishing a structure of exchanges among separate groups. As it is practically universal---some constraints on marriage are found in each and every society---the incest taboo has the impulsiveness of a natural desire. However since it is not a biological need (and Lvi-Strauss demonstrates this extremely convincingly via the case of cross-cousin marriage, which is a desire and not a need, while parallel-cousin marriage is better choice as that could be done to fulfill need and just a desire ) it partakes of a law, of a cultural obligation. The incest taboo is not so much a harmful restriction on the pool of marriage partners as a assurance that one group will gives its daughters to another group to fulfill the needs , as long as that the other group does the same. For Lvi-Strauss---and this is for the most part vital for family theory --the incest taboo prevents the marital family from dying in on itself as well as gives assurance to the fact that the wider society will definitely take preference over the family by means of marrying out side the family this group could be called non-family groups.
Philosophically, incest asks a essential question of our changing mores: not just what is normal as well as what is deviant, it also asks if such a thing as deviance really exists at all in the relationships which human have , if they give the impression of being acceptable to those who share them (Janeway p1). The course of impact of the incest taboo in prehistoric society is not inward toward relations among the immediate family; it is outward to the bigger society. It does not in any way refer to the sexual interests of the individual, what is actually refers to is the requirements of the society as a whole. The limit of sexual activity and marriage partners builds a society at large as the most important field of sexual objects as well as undercuts the autonomy and the power of the family that which immediate. Lacan and psychoanalysis give emphasis on the fact that the incest taboo tends to set what is commonly known as emotional relationships inside the family. This process takes place in the family's final structure.
Lvi-Strauss's alliance theory states that there are two diverse structural "models" of marriage exchange. Moreover the women of ego's group are presented to a different group that is "explicitly defined" by social institutions: this structure is called the "elementary structures of kinship". In other words it can also be called the group of probable spouses intended for the women in ego's group is "indetermined and always open", to the elimination, nevertheless, of assured kin-people (for instance nuclear family, aunts, uncles) as in the Western world. According Lvi-Strauss the latter is known as the" complex structures of kinship".
Levi-Strauss' model tried to offer a distinct explanation for cross-cousin marriage, sister-exchange, dual organization with rules of exogamy. Marriage rules over time create social structures, as marriages are mainly forged among groups and not only between the two individuals concerned. When women re exchanged by groups ordinary basis they marry collectively, with every marriage making a debtor/creditor relationship which ought to be fair during the "repayment" of wives, either directly otherwise in the next generation. By means of necessitating wife-exchange preparations, exogamy consequently promotes inter-group alliances as well as serves to form structures of social networks.
Work cited
Jack Goody; Comparative Approach to Incest and Adultery from Comparative Studies in Kinship, publishers Routledge and Kegan Paul Ltd. Stanford University Press 1969 p 2
Janeway Elizabeth, U.S. author, critic. "Incest: A Rational Look at the Oldest Taboo," Ms. New York, Nov. 1981 p1 Read More
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