The Navajo are being studied as the most interesting people around the world. Despite this fact, their own social organization is not yet understood. However, there are already theoretical approaches that best explain the Navajo kinship.
Actually, the kinship of the Navajo people started as they settled in the New Mexico Mountains. The area was a home to the ancient ones. They lived there for one-thousand years; yet, they abandoned the dwellings and moved southward and westward.
In the sixteen hundreds, the Spanish started to intrude the Pueblo Indians. Their hostility is engendered that the Pueblos fought against the European invaders. They also succeeded in throwing them off of their suppression.
At this particular time, they moved in the northern part and joined the Navajo settlements. Later on, the Navajo people started to take on the agricultural lives of the Pueblo Indians. Even the weaving methods and sheep raising were evident until the present. They also continued their aggressive behavior that they raid the Spanish settlements, including the Zuni, Pueblo and Hopi neighbors.
Navajo Kinship Strengthened by their Religious Beliefs
The Navajo kinship is strengthened by their religious beliefs. Their religion is at the center of their activity. They are strengthened because of elaborate ceremonies and prayer offerings. They are performing for religious practices in the time-honored and specific areas. The religion is established in the kinship to the particular places.
The religion is not separated from the kinship or relationship of the Navajo people and their specific geographical locations. The sites are also sacred due to religious events.
Family and Social Structure
As mentioned, a Navajo-born baby belongs to his or her mother’s clan. Then, the name of the clan is being passed to the children. As a young man get married, a woman to whom is to be married must be outside of the clan. Although the people outside the clan are not that blood-related, it is not yet appropriate to marry someone within the clan. The rule is being strictly observed because it is incest to the many Navajo people.
The custom of Navajo is on introducing the paternal and maternal clans in meeting another clan of Navajo. The Navajo people are known by the identification of their father’s, mothers, paternal grandfather’s and maternal grandfather’s. After the marriage, the residence was on the wife and her family. The inheritance is being correlated with the post marriage residence patterns. This is when the Navajo kinship starts descent up to the mother.
Based on the tradition, the Navajos will be meeting and referring each other as sister or brother. Navajo cousins also think and treat each other like sister or brother. Mother’s and father’s cousins in America are considered as aunts and uncles.
A Navajo who is strange in the surroundings has the responsibility for the welfare, food and housing. A Navajo from her mom’s clan or dad’s clan has the greatest potential for having personal contacts. This is a complex network of Navajo kinship. This interrelationship fused the bands of the Navajo people. Even Native Americans and Navajos have joined together as Navajo tribe.