According to Parsons (1967), cross-sex relations in the Neapolitan family are more significant than same-sex relations. She was referring specifically to the mother-son and the father-daughter relations that she considered to be enduring and influential. However, my own research indicated that mother-daughter and sister relations were strong and played a crucial role in the lives of many women and their families. And these relationships were not only important from a pragmatic point of view, they were also emotionally significant. Brother-sister ties may also be strong. Traditionally, brothers were held somewhat responsible for the reputations and safety of their sisters, especially if they were unmarried. Nowadays this is much more subject to personality or specific circumstances.
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