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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Cultural Persistence and Socio-Economic Change among the Abaluyia: Some Modern Problems in Patterns of Child Care
Author:Kilbridge, Philip L.
Periodical:Journal of Eastern African Research and Development
Geographic term:Kenya
child care
Cultural Roles
Women and Their Children
Abstract:An exploration of patterns of child care among the Abaluhya in Kakamega District, Western Province, Kenya, on the basis of fieldwork carried out in 1984-1985, extending the author's previous research on cultural influences on infancy. The author argues that situations existing in Kenya today, particularly modern socioeconomic factors not present in the premodern era, contribute to an increased vulnerability of children to abuse and neglect. Although the extended family continues to serve as a support group for related children, this traditional institution is under threat from many modern influences. While only a few cases of child abuse were discovered, a significant pattern of child neglect did emerge. Marriage and procreation are no longer strongly associated, leaving many unwanted children who are being cared for by their maternal grandparents, who are themselves increasingly faced with the contradiction between the desire to help their grandchildren (a traditional value) and the considerable monetary and other costs this involves. Bibliogr., notes.