Unformatted text preview: Early North American society and culture. Estimates of the population of North America at the time of European contact have been revised upward by modern scholarship to as many as ten million. Although the native peoples varied widely, they did share some important social and cultural traits. In modern America, society is chiefly based on the nuclear family (mother, father, and children), but kinship groups—the extended family of aunts, uncles, and cousins—were key to the social relations among the native peoples. Among tribes as different as the Pueblo of the Southwest and the Iroquois of the Northeast, kinship was determined by the female line. The clan was composed of several kinship groups that claimed descent from a common ancestor, often a woman. The roles assigned to men and women were clearly defined. The men hunted, engaged in trade, made war, assigned to men and women were clearly defined....
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- Fall '08
- North American, native peoples, North American society