Almost all Bakairi men and women are married or have been married. Single people tend to be widows or widowers, and they express the desire to remarry. One typical pattern of male-female courtship and marriage is young people having sex with each other and gradually becoming closer and ceasing sexual relations with others. They then marry. Another equally acceptable pattern is parents deciding on unions between two adolescents who have known each other all their lives. The Bakairi report that love is part of a marriage, but that the degree of relat-edness and the industrious nature of the individual are also important considerations. Males and females consider that they have a choice in when and with whom they can marry. When a marriage occurs the men and kin of the groom accompany him to the house of his bride where he hangs his hammock below hers. The fathers of the two individuals loudly proclaim the union while the bride and groom look extremely embarrassed.
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