Indigenous Culture: The Iroquois Kinship

The Iroquois Indians are very interesting people to learn about. Their kinship is what helps makes their culture to survive over the years. The Iroquois are consider a food-producing culture. The family would each have a part of the “system” to help maintain the house, crops, family and etc. For example in upstate New York the men of the Iroquois cleared and burn down the forest for the women to plant, weed and harvest the crops. In which shows us how the men and women of the Iroquois can teach us the way of living in big “groups”.

Among the Iroquois tribe women are valued by community; for their labor and contribution to the community. Cultivation was among matrilineally related women of the longhouse cooperatively. Labor organizers were consider to be the older women to ensure that work was done together. Power with in the Iroquoian society was amongst the women for the owned the maize. Yes the men were the warriors, hunters and traders but because of the contribution from the women of the maize; this let them got to war or trading expeditions.

Academic anxiety?
Get original paper in 3 hours and nail the task
Get your paper price

124 experts online

If the women did not wish for the men to go on either expedition they withheld maize from men and would not let them go. Marriage is the selection of marital partners in which are determined by kinship since it must be exogamous. Therefore meaning they must marry outside the clan and/or lineage; the kinship system of the Iroquoian recognizes two groupings. They are parents and siblings whom are closely related to marry and potential spouses and in-laws. An example would be is a person marries his/her cross cousin; whereas parallel cousins are to close to marry.

The book gives us an illustrated figure (4. 3 Iroquois kinship). Show us that marriages among cross cousins can and should be and that it not permitted for parallel cousins to marry. Cross cousins being married is also called sibling exchange system; the exchange of siblings in consecutive generations. Therefore keeping the wealth and reasserts alliances between families. With marriage comes divorce which means the men married they move into the wife’s village and longhouse.

If the wife no longer desired to be married the put the husbands stuff on the steps and when his comes home he realizes the marriage is terminated and returns to his village. Descent groups can make up clans; a grouping of people “membership” derives from actual and/or putative genealogical connection to unknown ancestor. Ancestors can be a person or scared plant or animal. The clans could be patriclans or matriclans and determined on whether membership is though the father’s or mother’s line. For example you have lineage and kindred.

My society is different and the same from the Iroquois ways of living. Now a day’s men and women can work together. There are still some people in the world who “play” by the genders rules game where men are the ones who work and women stay home. Yet this doesn’t affect me and my home for we each pull our share around the house. Much like the Iroquois; I say this for the Iroquois is part of my heritage my grandfather is a full blooded Iroquois and so was his parents.  Indian for my grandmother is German and a few other things, so you see I love my background and always wanting to learn more.

This essay was written by a fellow student. You may use it as a guide or sample for writing your own paper, but remember to cite it correctly. Don’t submit it as your own as it will be considered plagiarism.

Need a custom essay sample written specially to meet your requirements?

Choose skilled expert on your subject and get original paper with free plagiarism report

Order custom paper Without paying upfront

Indigenous Culture: The Iroquois Kinship. (2019, May 02). Retrieved from