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Do Some Common Interest Groups Replace Extended Family?

1098 words - 4 pages

Common-interests associations are found in almost every corner of the world, from the most arctic regions of the Russia to the hot, arid deserts of Africa. They are designed for many purposes including interests, beliefs, ideals, helping people cope, promoting people's rights, and etcetera. Throughout history, up until now, common-interest groups have provided people with care, understanding, happiness, comfort, and support. It is partially because of this reason that these groups are replacing portions of the extended family. In addition to diminishing importance of the extended family, modernization is affecting the size of family.Groups based on common-interest are particularly prominent in modern industrial societies, but are found in many of the world's traditional societies as well. Among these traditional societies are pastoralists who participate in quite a few interest groups. These can come in many forms. An example of this would be among the Tiriki in Kenya. Here, the people are organized into one of seven groupings. Each group passes successively through four distinctive age grades: Warriors, Elder Warriors, Judicial Elders, and Ritual Elders. Each one of these groups performs certain tasks that correspond to their status. Through recent events, traditional roles have been dropped, and new roles have been assigned to each. This can be seen through the Warriors most prominently; with peace amongst the Tiriki, warriors no longer have to act as guardians, but rather, they may leave their lands to pursue education and employment elsewhere. Meanwhile, Elder Warriors take on the roles of executives, Judicial Elders settle disputes and act as the local judicial body, and Ritual Elders run the initiation ceremonies and are recognized for their power as sorcerers [1]. Among other pastoralist groups, other forms of common-interest groups may develop. In modern times, most pastoralists need some agricultural goods, and if they cannot get them by exchanging their own livestock produce, they have to farm. As a result, groups of horticulturalists or farmers may form. In addition, a group of men come together during winter to discuss the best possible migration route in which they will suffer minimal loss. This could be seen as a sort of common-interest group, because these people have a cultural/environmental organization in which they share a common interest. Pastoralists, though not to extent of urban or modern cultures, do have common interest groups.Personally, I am a part of many interest groups. Because I live in a highly modernized and developed country, I have access to hundreds of thousands of common-interest associations. One common interest group I participate in is church. Church is a common interest group based on the unity of people with of similar faith. As part of a Christian church, I voluntarily participate, because people here share my specific values and beliefs. In addition to church, I participate in a kick-boxing group. Here,...

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