Iroquois Kinship System

Topics: Iroquois, Marriage, Family Pages: 3 (821 words) Published: September 18, 2011
Iroquois Kinship 1

Iroquois Kinship System

Carl B. Lockhart

ANT 101

Robert Moon

August 29, 2011

Iroquois Kinship 2

Iroquois Kinship System

The first scientific investigation of an Indian tribe was conducted by Henry Lewis Morgan in the 1800’s. The League of the Ho-De-No–Sau-Nee, or Iroquois was published in 1851 and this book is a valuable contribution to Iroquois studies. With this paper I will discuss the kinship system of the Iroquois tribe, describe three specific examples of how the kinship of the Iroquois culture impacts the way this culture behaves and compare this culture to my own society. The Iroquois tribes are a food-producing society that lived in North America, mainly in upstate New York. Their main crops were primarily “The Three Sisters” corn, beans, and squash. The Iroquois were horticulturalists and spent little to no time hunting and gathering. The men cleared and burned the forest while women planted, weeded, and harvested the crops. Cultivation was done cooperatively among the matrilineally related women of the longhouse. Older women would act as labor organizer, ensuring that everyone worked together for success. The Iroquois women produced about 65 percent of all products during the time of the European contact. The role of the Iroquois women was very important because of their labor. As the cultivators within the tribe, they were involved in many extra tribal conflicts. The women also owned the maize or Indian corn or seeds; this gave them power within Iroquoian society. If the women were against a conflict or raiding activity, they withheld maize from the warriors, which meant the men could not go to war. The Iroquois...

References: Nowak, Barbara, Laird, Peter (2010) Cultural Anthropology: Ashford University Discovery Series
Morgan, Lewis Henry (1818-81). (1998). In The New Encyclopedia of the American West. Retrieved from Http://
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