Definitions starting with K

ID #2423

Kinship

Traditionally the Bahamian family has tended to be large and close-knit, comprising a complex network of mutual obligations and resources, both social and economic. Relatives still often have houses in the same YARD, the extended family making up a TOWN or COPPET known by the TITLE of the GENERATION. BEFORE-TIME, in the days of GREATS and FOREPARENTS, people were less likely to leave the island of their birth and it was not unusual to find kin who were DOUBLE FAMILY to each other.

If a child's MUMA must go to work, its MAMA may care for it; a child's GRAN and GRINNY-GRAN are considered PARENTS, too. In the absence of POP, MUMA BREDDA might help rear a BOY-CHILD. If older FAMILIES work or are ailing, a GIRL-CHILD will have to help care for the children who FOLLOW BEHIND her. However, there are usually enough adults around—e.g. a FOSTER-WIFE, a FATHER-IN-LAW, or other STEP-PEOPLE—who take good care of their children, whether LAWFUL or OUTSIDE.

Family relationships are so important that kinship terms are frequently used in addressing relatives, even one's CON or BEEN or GORDY or GOD-BROTHER. They are also extended to use with friends; men of the same generation may call one another BREDDA (or B' or BRA Or BRO-MAN or BUBBA or BULLA) and address a woman as SISTER (even if they intend to flirt). It is polite to address people of the older generation as MA and PA, whether or not they are relatives.

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Last update: 2013-02-20 19:52
Author: Holm and Shilling, DBE, 1982
Revision: 1.5

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