Anthropology and Development by Lucy Mair (auth.)

By Lucy Mair (auth.)

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Types of Family But there are many more questions to ask about families besides the number of children a woman bears. And indeed the first question is what different societies consider a family to be. We agree that it is a domestic unit, a group of people living and keeping house together. What is called the nuclear, or sometimes the elementary, family consists of an adult couple with 30 Family and Kinship 31 their children. Such a group need not have the legal status that is given it by the marriage of the parents; ifit does, we may call it the simple legal family.

The French made technical assistance agreements with nearly all their former colonies, under which they provided most of the experts needed. In the educational field the consequence has been that secondary and higher education in francophone Africa is still directed to the examinations held in France. ) Some new states have engaged expert advisers from a Modes of Livelihood 29 variety of countries so as to avoid dependence on anyone; that strategy sometimes had the disadvantage that the experts could not agree on the kind of advice to offer.

Migrant labour is older than colonial rule, but its extent increased very greatly during the colonial period; Chinese and Indians, and men from the Pacific Islands, were recruited by fair means{)r foul, and always on long-term contracts, to work in places many miles by sea from their homes - Pacific Islanders on the sugar plantations of Queensland, Chinese on the sugar plantations of Natal, Indians to build railways in East Africa, to mention only a few examples. Later the mining areas of southern and central Africa drew their labour force from distant parts of the continent; at first these workers too were constrained by long-term contracts which it was a criminal offence to break, but as time went on a period of spontaneous migration came to be taken for granted as a part of every man's life.

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