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PLA Notes CD-ROM 1988-2001 1 Genealogies as a method of social mapping in PRA

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Document begins: PLA Notes CD-ROM 1988­2001 1 Genealogies as a method of social mapping in PRA David Mosse and Mona Mehta Introduction not have a distinct physical identity. Rather, each homestead is situated in its own Genealogies have long been an important cultivated fields. Villages are often composed instrument of `social mapping' in the of two or more hamlets (phaliyas) which are anthropologists's tool kit. Not only do commonly the units within which the genealogies provide a map of local voluntary exchange of goods and labour takes communities in kinship terms, but place. A village is typically composed of a anthropologists have used genealogies to single lineage, and the hamlets are composed explore patterns of inheritance, marriage of units of this lineage. Indeed, the practice of alliance, social hierarchy and reciprocity, and village exogamy (marriage outside the village) in other ways to develop an understanding of expresses the tacit view of the village as a local communities. Genealogies provide a large unilineal (single line) descent group. means by which analysts and development This gives the village a strong corporate workers can place individuals socially. identity. Moreover, the genealogy involves a type of knowledge which is often central to the social ...

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