Eric D. Widmer

This collection uses the notion of 'assembly' as a new approach to understanding family and kinship. Investigating constitutive assemblages this book argues that in assembling, people manifest themselves as an 'us'. The revival of rules as a sociological instrument is explored: rules of genealogical proximity, bilaterality, equality, and monogamy. Rules are most influential in ritualistic family gatherings, such as weddings, Christmas festivities, putting family photos on display in the home and obituaries. The book also explores relatedness as it is actualized in the turning-points in one's life, which set the reassembling of families in motion. It investigates how setting up families mobilizes significant others and how old age, divorce and global migration lead to new familial constellations, and how these frame exclusivity and inclusivity.

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