Gender Related Social Groups

The basic kinship unit of the Cherokee was the clan, and lineage was traced through the woman (matrilineal). People belonged to the clan of their mother. Their relatives were those who could be traced through her, including siblings, maternal grandmother, maternal uncles, and maternal aunts. The children of maternal aunts were kin but those of maternal uncles were not. Children were not blood relatives of their father or grandfather. The total clan did not live together but the core members of a household belonged to the same clan.

Matters of kinship affected social interaction, demography, internal order, and foreign policy, which gave women status and power. The Cherokees of the 18 th century had seven clans. The seven known clans were Anaiwahiya (Wolf), Anikawi (Deer), Anidjiskwa (Bird), Aniwodir (Paint), Anisahoni (Blue), Anigotigewi (Wild Potato), and Anigilohi (Twister) (Perdue, 1998). Most villages had members from each of the seven clans.

Pregnancy And Childbirth

Pregnancy And Childbirth

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