Children and Parents

Ibrahim Muhawi

in Speak, Bird, Speak Again

Published by University of California Press

Published in print February 1989 | ISBN: 9780520062924
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520908734 | DOI:
Children and Parents

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This chapter presents a Palestinian folktale that focuses on the relationship between mother and son, specifically sexual jealousy, a taboo subject in the family circle. The conflict arises from the son's need to switch roles—he must cease to be his mother's son and establish himself as his wife's husband and the head of his family. In the situation of the patrilocal extended family, when a son marries, both mother and daughter-in-law have difficulties. The mother's possessiveness in the tale, her need to keep her son under her control, drives her to throw the wife out of the house so that she can be both mother and wife to her own son.

Keywords: Palestinian folktale; mother; son; daughter-in-law; husband

Chapter.  12925 words. 

Subjects: Social and Cultural Anthropology

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