The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

book : 'Konyak Nagas' by Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf, (1969)

caption: Chapter Three. Phases of Life
caption: paternity of children of unmarried women
medium: books
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Wakching
person: Furer-Haimendorf/ C.
date: 1969
refnum: with permission from Holt, Rinehart & Winston, New York67:2
text: We shall see later that the clan membership of a child could be changed if the mother left her legal husband and, subsequently, married the man whom she regarded as the biological father, and who would accept the child as his own. In this case, however, it was not biological paternity but the mother's marriage which determined the child's clan membership and its position in the social system. Only in the rare case of a child born to an unmarried girl did the biological paternity automatically determine the child's clan membership. On no account could a child belong to the mother's natal clan.