The purpose of this article is to explore the patterns of economicsupport between kin in Côte d'Ivoire. The nuclear family has been dismissed as a meaningful unit within the corporate extended kinship structure of West Africa. Furthermore, extended kinship has been seen as an important support for high fertility since the costs of childbearing are shared within a wider kinship group and not fully absorbed by the biological parents. Extended kinship patterns are also thought to greatly facilitate informal insurance markets. However, data on economic transfers between kin in Côte d'Ivoire show a surprising but clear picture: kinship support in Côte d'Ivoire is primarily focused on close kin (parents, children and siblings). This pattern of kinship nucleation appears to intensify for richer households, despite controls for education, residency, nationality, and household size. The limited, cross-sectional perspective suggests that development is not working so much within the existing family structure but rather is operating to transform the ties between kin.
Population Research and Policy Review – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 12, 2004
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