Tangible Affinities? Exploring Real Life Kinship
June 7 2006
Venue: Seminar Rm 1.06, Old Surgeons' Hall, High School Yards
Organised by: Innogen
This paper will start from the current popular fascination with kinship, and ask how well this is understood and appreciated in social science explanation and theory. It will suggest a way of thinking about kinship - specifically as tangible affinities - that appreciates and builds upon that fascination. It will argue that this requires methodological approaches that resonate with the `real life' experience of kinship, on a range of axes or dimensions, and which push at traditional disciplinary boundaries. The paper will explore what these axes might be, and in the process will address key questions including - What is kinship? What, if anything, is distinctive about it? Why does it matter? How can it be understood?