Kin relationship may be approached in the traditional manner as the classification or the sociopolitical “relating” of genealogically differentiated relatives, or it may be seen as the purposive differentiation of relational categories to compel a “flow” of analogical “relatedness” among them. Analysis of a New Guinea relational system in the latter terms, beginning with the “interdict” on relations with the wife's mother, reveals a set of operant concepts for the understanding of kinship in symbolic terms, as well as a set of general conclusions as to the nature of kinship.
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