Creole Kinship: Genealogy as Gift

Engseng Ho

in The Graves of Tarim

Published by University of California Press

Published in print November 2006 | ISBN: 9780520244535
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520938694 | DOI:
Creole Kinship: Genealogy as Gift

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This chapter explores the impact of the genealogical understandings of Hadrami travel writings on the conduct of kinship and marriage relations in the Malay Archipelago, both among Hadramis and between Hadramis and non-Hadramis. It explains that genealogy provides a conceptual bridge between the writing and social practice because it is not a static category of culture but a historical product that evolved as the diaspora moved between societies and contexts. it contends that the elaboration of genealogical concepts amounted to the creation of theories of and for a diaspora: how it moved through time and space, what kinds of exchanges it could and should have with other peoples, how it could maintain a corporate identity through generations of intermarriage with foreigners abroad, and whether imperatives existed for doing so.

Keywords: travel writings; Hadramis; genealogy; kinship; marriage relations; Malay Archipelago; social practice; diaspora

Chapter.  15030 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Anthropology

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