By Erdmute Alber, Cati Coe, Tatjana Thelen (eds.)
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Extra info for The Anthropology of Sibling Relations: Shared Parentage, Experience, and Exchange
Younger children who are born in a country of migration that recognizes citizenship on the basis of place of birth are citizens, while parents and older children are not, or may even be present illegally and subject to deportation (Boehm 2011). Furthermore, older children “left behind” when a parent migrates can develop close relationships to grandparents, who may be called “mother” and “father,” and to the other children a grandparent is raising: cousins who are taken as siblings (Rae-Espinoza 2011, Leinaweaver 2008).
Thus I want to argue that kai//are (growing up together) sisterhood is closely linked to similarly responding to and remembering key experiences—not only experiencing them together. Another peculiarity of Christina and Mona’s sisterhood is the social and ecological environment in which they grew up. As mentioned before, in the rural setting discussed here, even very young children are left in the care of other children most of the time. There is almost no motor vehicle traffic in the area, and children learn early on to detect and handle situations involving dangerous animals, especially snakes and scorpions.
Furthermore, the expansion of schooling and educational credentialing worldwide over the course of the twentieth century raised the degree of investment required for children to be economically and socially successful—to be fully grown “adults” (as the literature on youth in Africa would have it). This development has had a number of effects on parent-child relationships and expectations of reciprocity between the generations, such as the greater significance paid to fathers and the resources they could provide to children (Allman and Tashjian 2000) or the degree to which children’s obligations to provide elder care to parents were dependent on the parent’s investment in the child’s education and success in life (Aboderin 2004, Alber 2012).
The Anthropology of Sibling Relations: Shared Parentage, Experience, and Exchange by Erdmute Alber, Cati Coe, Tatjana Thelen (eds.)