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I found this article vandalized by people pushing a pro-inbreeding agenda and had to replace propaganda with scientific facts. The propaganda had citations, and I don't have that information at hand. Someone will need to revise what I typed up to include proper citations so such kinds of misinformation spreaders can't have excuse to revert it back. While Wikipedia might prefer references, it's first priority should be facts, such as the 100% scientifically proven 'common knowledge' fact that inbreeding is harmful, rather than allowing someone to make up wikipedia rules based technicalities to falsely justify puting up harmful misinformation instead. My revision is the one that summarizes everything known about inbreeding. What it is, the affects it has provenly had throughout history, humans' natural adaptations to prevent it, and the reasons why it sometimes occurs despite being harmful (including the modern issue of birth control drugs that can cause inbreeding). --Nothing to sign with. Sorry, I study this, but I am not a proper Wikipedia person. I just go in and make simple edits on rare occassion to article or discussion to point out if one or more persons who've overtaken a wiki article don't know what they're talking about, are pushing misinformation over personal bias, or to correct a simple grammar or spelling error. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:52, 20 November 2011 (UTC)

Close relationships project[edit]

The "Close relationships" box lists many complicated and atypical relationship types but for some reason skips the most basic - Child and Parent. Furthermore, Husband and Wife are each included, but not Son or Daughter, Brother or Sister, Mother or Father, Niece or Nephew, Aunt or Uncle. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:28, 9 May 2010 (UTC)

Consanguineal families[edit]

I agree with the others. This article is a complete mess. It needs a complete overhaul. (talk) 16:02, 15 August 2009 (UTC)

This whole article is a complete mess. were my mom would be hahhahhahahaahha In the topic 'Consanguineal families' for instance, the first sentance says 'the most common subset consists of a mother and her children, and other people — usually the family of the mother' but then goes on to say that 'When men own important property, consanguineal families commonly consist of a husband and wife, their children, and other members of the husband's family.' Since in most cultures men own important property, the final sentance is in complete contradiction of the first claim!

Whoever had recently deleted most of the article had the right idea: to start completely over rather than revert to the old mess!

I completely agree. The article is an incoherent farrago of abstruse anthropological theory that means nothing to the average reader who comes to the article to find out some basic facts about family. The very opening is incoherent: "Family is a Western term used to have denote a domestic group of people..." What does it mean to say "Family is a Western term"? Family is an English word. Other languages have different words. Does whoever wrote that think "Eastern" people, whoever they are, don't have families, or terms for them? And "used to have denote" is such gibberish I don't even know how to fix it. The article needs a complete rewrite by someone who isn't so immersed in anthropological theory that they have no perspective. Languagehat 12:08, 8 October 2007 (UTC)

New Family Structure[edit]

I have a revolutionary idea for a family structure that hasn't been acknowledge, please tell me what you think:

A more revolutionary idea, in contrast to conjugal families and polygamous relationships, would be to have households with more than three adults, multiple male and females raising arbitrary number children, with the children born to or adopted by different mothers and sired by different male adults. This structure has not been legally acknowledged, as the term marriage/civil union/ family is not defined as such, nor joint custody of minors for more than two people ever been considered; nor do adoption laws address this situation. Legally terms and responsibilities will have to be redefined to allow for this structure. However it is imaginable with the increase in multiple partners, and ease of the openness of cultural perception. This arrangement can be based on shared responsibilities, such as child raising, income generating, as well as more varies positive interaction between members.

I don't know whether this has been documented before...

Totally agree. Very progressive. With the current adaptability to the new ideas this structure will be legalized in about 1000 years.

step- and half- siblings[edit]

As there are carefully worded defintions of son, daughter, grandfather, and so forth, should there also be definitions of, eg, half-sister, mother-in-law, etc ? (Actually it surprises me to see that a brother is the child of the same mother; in my experience in the U.S. a brother seems to be a child of a same parent -- that is, I've not noticed a matrilineal bias.) -- ll

it used to be in the law; as you have noticd, it is changing. Slrubenstein
Inquisitively: In the law(s) of which countries or state(s) ? -- ll
French has the demi- prefix paralleling beau- for siblings born from one parent, but not the other. Beau- still applies everywhere else, but talking about the daughter of my stepfather and my mother as my "belle-soeur" would be very odd!--Circeus 18:35, 6 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Fred. good point abot the economic role of the family -- except I disafree, somewhat. It is true that family members seldome work together or share owershi of a buisness like the used to -- but families still often consume together -- family meals are important as are holidays, and parents' sown social status often depends on how much they spend on their kides, even their kids living away at college. In the US middleclass, I'd say between medical expenses, clothing, cars and car insurance, and the costs of college, families pump millions or billions into the economy. Do you agree? If so perhaps you can rewrite your contribution to say somehow that it isn't less impoatant economicallly but its importance has changed...?

I reverted to remove the recent addition about Chinese kinship. I do this for two reasons: first, this type of family arrangement is already discussed below -- it is either Crow or Omaha Kinship. Second, I think in general the article will get bogged down if it detailed every different family system in the world. I would suggest a link at the bottom to Chinese kinship (I couldn't do it, but there are many good studies like Wolf's House of Lim.) and other specific cultures, for separate articles. Slrubenstein

None of the Morgan catagories fits the Chinese systems. I don't see how the six catalogies can describe more than 6 family systems. I think it would be better off to remove those silly names and just list all the different components of the classification such as gender, generation, marriage relation, birth relation, relative age, father side, mother side etc. Kowloonese 08:14, 8 Jan 2004 (UTC)

The six systems are just a starting point -- in most socieites you find a variation of one of the six. There are alternate names (e.g., bifurcate-merging instead of Eskimo) and I have no objection to changing the names to those. We can also present the six systems of paridigmatic examples of how different components often fall together. In any event, I think six abstract models are better than thousands of specific examples for an encyclopedia article. Slrubenstein

I have recently created the new Chinese kinship article. I invite all of your help to complete the chinese terminlogy tables. --Kvasir 09:58, 16 January 2006 (UTC)

Is there a list of family-related topics ? Jay 23:01, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)


The page said:

  • a cousin descended from one's great-grandparent is one's "second cousin"

This is not always correct, since the grandchild of one's great-grandparent is a first cousin once removed, not a second cousin. The text on the page at that time was consistent with this interpretation, and inconsistent with the definition I quoted above:

Distant cousins of an older generation (in other words, one's parents' first cousins) are technically first cousins once removed...

One's parents' first cousins are descended from one's great-grandparents, but not from one's grandparents, and, as it says, are first cousins once removed, not second cousins, as the erroneous passage stated. I have corrected this.

I believe the correct classification is as follows. Find the nearest common ancestor of the two individuals. Say that this ancestor is n generations back from one individual and m generations back from the other. Then:

     n  m     relationship
     0  0     self
     0  1     parent / child
     1  1     sibling
     0  2     grandparent / grandchild
     1  2     aunt / uncle / niece / nephew
     2  2     first cousins
     0  3     great-grandparent / great-grandchild
     1  3     great-aunt/uncle / great-niece/nephew
     2  3     first cousins once removed
     3  3     second cousins

-- Dominus 14:30, 22 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Hey! This could make a neat article about cousins! -- The Anome 16:29, 30 Jun 2004 (UTC)

Yes, and then we could have a discussion of cross cousins vs. parallel cousins. -- Dominus 13:54, 2 Jul 2004 (UTC)
You need to be careful because "cousin" is also used to mean "relative" and you'd have to recognise that --BozMo|talk 10:04, 27 Jul 2004 (UTC)


I have heard that the Punjabi language has a detailed set of terms for relatives of all sorts. Anyone here a native speaker, and can they confirm this? -- The Anome 16:27, 30 Jun 2004 (UTC)

family (taxonomy)[edit]

someone should create an article for family, as used in taxonomy (eg. family Araceae) --Kyknos 10:43, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Family (biology) redirects to Scientific classification, which is listed in Family (disambiguation). VV 11:43, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Family of Orientation vs. Family of Origin[edit]

This article uses the term family of orientation. I'm familiar with the term family of origin. Doing some Google searches, it seems that the two are not synonymous, though I am not clear what the distinction is. Could someone clarify for me? Would this make a good article (or two)? -Rholton 04:23, 21 Oct 2004 (UTC)

I have never heard of "family of origin" though I have heard of family of orientation (as it is explained here) so I can't help you, sorry. Slrubenstein 15:53, 26 Jan 2005 (UTC)
"Family of Origin" is often used by gay and lesbian people to refer to the families in which they were raised or are related to by blood. In such a context, many often use the term "Family of Choice" (or simply "Family") to refer to the people close to them with whom they share many of the emotional/social/financial ties generally associated with the nuclear family. I am however unable to provide any references to support such a definition.
I have heard the term "family of origin" used by heterosexuals. It's used to distinguish the family in which you were a child from the family in which you are a parent, the latter usually being called "my family" or "my wife/husband and kids".Bostoner (talk) 04:08, 28 April 2009 (UTC)

Family Relationship Titles[edit]

I'm just wondering; does anyone know what you would call a person who is eight generations up the family tree: Your great-great-great-great-great-great-grandfather? Because I really doubt that is what he's called. Anyway, I'm writing a story, and would like to know. If you could help, that'd be great. No pun intended. Thank you.

You would probably just say great-grandfather and let it go at that. -Aranel ("Sarah") 04:14, 26 Jan 2005 (UTC)
At 8 generations, the term "ancestor" is perhaps the most conviennt, and accurate - because the term "great-grandfather" does refer to specific people who are several generations removed from the particular person you are actually talking about. 00:25, 26 May 2006 (UTC)lasalle202

Names for high ancestors[edit]

Of course, the sequence is:

  1. nOg nOG
  2. nog nog
  3. mEy mEY
  4. mey mey

After this, however, simply repeating the word "great" can be awkward. Therefore, I think it would be good for a new term for the next element. However, I don't know whether it should be "tetra-great-grandparent" or "quadri-great-grandparent", the reason is I don't know whether "great" is a Greek word or a Latin word. Which is it?? 01:16, 30 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Well, of course this speculation couldn't go in the artice, but for the sake of argument, according to this source, that particular meaning of great comes from Latin via French grand. -Aranel ("Sarah") 04:14, 26 Jan 2005 (UTC)
There is another common way of saying this: "gggg-grandparent" --Blainster 21:28, 22 Mar 2005 (UTC)


  • I would like to create readily usable information defining relationships - which "general public" seem to get a bit confused about. A lot of the raw definitions are in family, but it isn't in a readily accessible form. I would like to do two thingsand I'm not sure if (a) is wikipedia-allowed and if (b) is drawable.
    • (a): Start from a page called something like "The individual" and follow links called "father", "husband", "son" (and other sex and gender neutral and legally neutral terms too) to find what ralationship that person is to the individual. Thus the chain "individual" > "father" > "brother" > "daughter" would get "1st cousin", whilst "father" > "non-parental wife" > "daughter" would get "half-sister" and "father" > "brother" > "wife" would get "aunt-in-law" (if such a relationship exists!) etc. I envisage this as a multi page network of linked pages each of which would be relatively small. Most pages should have most (all?) typical close relationships "father", "mother", "parent", "brother", "sister", "sibling", "son", "daughter", "offspring", "husband", "wife", "spouse" etc. The info could cover assorted conventions, not just US or UK.
    • (b): A giant family tree not giving peoples names but their realtionship. The big problem here is how to draw it in a way that is displayable and complete. I can't even work out how to do this in Excel"
    • Signing for: original *, **(a), **(b) -- SGBailey 09:56, 2005 Mar 21 (UTC)

The Simpsons?[edit]

"The Simpson family is intended to represent the average middle American family."

Huh? I certainly hope the average American family does not act the same way as the Simpsons does! Is there no better example?

No The Answer is No. All Americans are like the Simpsons!

Come on! they're not all like the Simpsons - most of them, yes, but not all. On the other hand nearly all British families are like The Royle Family. For our friends in the colonies who may not be familiar with this, note the spelling and follow the link! Arcturus 10:05, 18 September 2005 (UTC)

"The Simpson family is intended to represent the average middle American family." For a long time people in the US were taught that the average family consisted of two parents and 2.54 children. It is in this sense that the Simpsons are supposed to "represent" the American family: Bart and Lisa = 2, and the eternal infant Maggie is the .54. It was supposed to be a joke, get it? Slrubenstein | Talk 23:06, 18 September 2005 (UTC)

Right, so a joke. This is an ENCYCLOPEDIA not a place for jokes about families. They do not represent the average american family. They are a satire on the average american family. Yialanliu (talk) 01:46, 11 February 2008 (UTC)

Fictional Family Constructs[edit]

Has there been any consideration of including a section on fictional family styles such as Robert A. Heinlein used in many of his stories. It's been a while since I've read them, but they are variations on consanguineal/matrifocal families. I'd have to go read the relevant stories again before I could write anything decent about them though. Does anyone know of any other similar cases where an author depicts an unusual style of family? If so, it may be worthwhile including a section on fictional family styles.

Many of Ursula K LeGuin's stories contain or are even based on family relationships that are not currently known to have existed.

Criticism of Family Structure[edit]

I know a number of political activists throughout time have called for the abolition of the family unit (i.e., that the family has been but should not continue to be the basic group unit of society). Have such arguments been persistent or persuasive enough to merit a section? The Literate Engineer 21:44, 28 August 2005 (UTC)

I think that if you have done some research and feel you can add quality content to this article, without violating any of our policies (esp. NPOV) then you should just go ahead and contribute! Good luck, SR

explanation for revert[edit]

I reverted Freethinkers recent cut. Freethinker cut material that reflects the consensus among sociologists and anthropologists. Of course we can discuss how to improve the clarity of the writing style. And we can add the views of other social scientists and others. But do not delete a point of view just because you do not like it. I can provide sources, but the material freethinker cut is in virtually any introduction to anthropology textbook. Freethinker, I am assuming you sincerely want to improve the article, and appreciate your dedication to NPOV. But please understand that "neutral" point of view does not mean "no" point of view, it can also mean multiple points of view. If you know of research that is critical of the anthropological literature, add it. But do not delete valid and verifiable information. Also, please review our No original research policy, which is just as important as NPOV. What you deleted is not my personal point of view, it is the view of a set of scholars. Please do not delete it because it does not coincide with your personal point of view. Our own points of view are not relevant. Slrubenstein | Talk 17:13, 21 September 2005 (UTC)

I researched and found that there are many different "types" of family structures that are generally agreed upon in different anthropology textbooks (however their definition were at times contradictory), the three that are given in the article are all women based, none were male based. I wanted to remove this bias. I felt that adding this other material (such as other family structures,which have differnt definitions depending on which textbook used) would be even more confusing and complicate the whole article. I don't want to get into liberal scholars vs conservative scholar debates, so I made the article nutral POV, not my personal POV (though I would like to ;)the only normal family is like mine ahhh perhaps not!!)nor original research.

I did not revert your revert, ao we can work avoid getting into a revert war, can you help mak this article less biased??? Thanks1freethinker 17:59, 21 September 2005 (UTC)

Freethinker, almost all sources are biased. The way to make the article less biased is to add other points of view and I have no objection over that. It isn't a question of liberal versus conservative scholars — I have no idea what George Murdock's politics were, for example, nor that of other anthropologists who define these family types. I honestly do not understand what you mean by "women based" since only one type of family (matrifocal) excludes the male parent (the other two involve both a mother and father). The conjugal and consanguinal families are not female-based at all. Moreover, these three types describe cultural norms. There are some societies in which the matrifocal family is the "ideal." But whetehr you are talking about a society that has as its ideal matrifocal or conjugal families, these are cultural ideals. They certainly do not exclude the possibility of a single-father household or a family that has at its head a gay couple. They only describe what the predominant or expected family is in a given society.
I appreciate your not wanting to start a revert war. I think the first thing is to make this part of the article clearer. I genuinely do not see it is a female-centered, so maybe this is a problem not in the substance but just the manner of expression that can be improved. Beyond that, I think the only way an article like this can achieve NPOV is by providing multiple points of view, not by deleting one point of view. And "family" is such a complex and divisive thing, I find it hard to imagine there being one definition all people will agree with, or one family form that all will agree with. Certainly, most anthropologists are explicit that there is no one universal definition or form of the family. Slrubenstein | Talk 20:13, 21 September 2005 (UTC)


Why does this artical seem to assume that the parent is the basis of the family and that the children have no role in the decision making? It seems kind of Non-NPOV and Anti-Youth.

That's becauise the family unit itself is anti-youth. RingtailedFoxTalkStalk 19:20, 28 May 2007 (UTC)

Random Comments from top[edit]

I re-read family....and found the first half of the article very confusing (could just be me :) ) What is the definition of a family in the United States consisting of only a single man a single woman and some kids? What I am reading in the article seems to be very biased against or limiting mens role in families. (all three definition begins with one or more mother(s)), I will work on this article but would like some other comments and views before starting.

the above is just my comments, no offense intended to anyone 1freethinker 20:21, 19 September 2005 (UTC)

(just musings here, that's why it's in Talk)

I know it's correct, but "between a man and a woman" sounds to me like an invitation to argument, as does other parts of this article. In fact "marriage between a man and a woman" sounds like it's pushing an agenda.

Why is marriage required for a family - do tribes that don't have marriage ceremonies not have families? Are children required to have a family? Is a single mother with kids a family (it worked for the Partridge family)? Are adopted kids part of a family? Was "Party of Five" whose parents had died, a family? I live in a "single family home" - but I'm just one person - should I worry about being found out and evicted?

And I guess somewhere there should be a discussion of "family values". (BTW I always chuckle at The Sims when it's setting up and goes through "reticulating splines...redefining family values..."

Does a family have to be human - is it a "family" of hampsters?

There are a lot of other senses of "family" not discussed here. Any group of people with a common cause or association may refer to themselves as a "family".

BTW, Ed, I do not consider myself a "gay rights advocate". I may or may not be a feminist, depending upon the definition of the term. But even in summaries, shouldn't we stay away from terms like this, used as insults? Seems to me you knew it _wasn't_ NPOV when you posted it.


SR, ya know I love ya but I have to disagree with some of your rewrite. First, you substituted "matrifocal" for "single-parent". What happened to families of one man plus children, of which there are a reasonable number? I object to their being left out. Second, this bit:

A conjugal family, also called a nuclear family, consists of one or more mothers and their children, and/or one or more spouses (usually husbands). This kind of family is common where men desire to assert control over children, or where there is a sexual division of labor requiring the participation of both men and women, and where families are relatively mobile.

The sociology sources I read clearly distinguished between "nuclear" and "conjugal" families, based on the degree of the socially-enforced ties to the extended family (the former has lots, the latter none). Also, again, what's this with "mothers and children" instead of the previous gender-neutral phrasing? I object on behalf of single fathers, dammit! :) -- April

--April, love ya back! Let's see. I think cross-culturally and historically the mother-child dyad is most important. BUT I absolutely would not want to write out single-father families. In fact, I think/thought I mentioned them explicitly in the last paragraph.
I have no objecting to mentioning it more, BUT there still is a number of differences between single-mother headed families and single-father headed -- not just the percentage variation within the US, but in terms of among different cultures, and of course the reasons. I'll play a bit with this but certainly welcome your changes.
And as for the distinction between conjugal and nuclear, I am unfamiliar with this so perhaps you can rewrite the section (or I will try, but then check me). I think it is important to distinguish between anthropologists and sociologists here.
I will try to do justice to your comments and then hope you will refine it even more, SR
  • Sounds reasonable to me! Perhaps we can separate the category of "one adult" families into subfields of "matrifocal" and "single parent"? I'll try to look up more stuff on conjugal vs. nuclear, and toss that in when you're done. -- April
Okay, -- April, I tried to put in the distinction between nuclear and conjugal -- please check it out and make additional changes.
I did not make any further changes concerning single-father, for two reasons. First, I do mention them in the last paragraph. Second, I don't object to more discussion but if you do not mind I'd rather leave it to you to sort it out. But let me share my major concern first.
I think it is VERY important to distinguish between normative type of family for a given society or subculture, versus an acceptable variation of that normative type, versus what is considered a breakdown of a normative type. Thus, in our society the nuclear family is the norm, if not statistically than culturally. Of course there are examples of single-parent households; when the mother is a widow or the father is a widower, this is generally considered sad but understandable and even sometimes inevitable. But there are other instances where some people (and I am not one of them, but I am trying to take them seriously) will say that a deliberate single-parent household represents a breakdown of the family. Now, politics aside (and also, the fact that whatever the "normative" family type in our society is, is changing), there are many societies where the head of household is a single mother and this is not at all considered a breakdown or even a sad unfortunate variation, but rather the norm. This is why I highlight matrifocal family -- it is not necessarily an exception or a result of breakdown, it can be a norem. But I know of no societies where the single-father is the norm: it is a sad exception, or a sign of social breakdown. Again, I am not trying to make a moreal judgenement; single-father households may become completely acceptable as desirable in our society.
I hope you see that my main point is to keep separate different cultural norms, versus examples of acceptable exceptions to the norm within a society, versus exceptions that many within the society find unacceptable. If you can find a more sophisticated way to spell this out (and in a more NPOV way), and work more discussion of single-father families in, I would not only have no objection, I'd be greatful. What do you hink? SR

Nice job on the article April and SR. Query.. Is enculturate a word? Actually.. is enculture a word? ;) And what about us men with cats? And fish in the office? They're reproducing, actually they have a better 'home life' than me... Errr, now I'm depressed, must kill fish... Where was I? Oh yeah, great job in spite of my nitpicks. --Rgamble

I revised the opening paragraph, and moved the definition of kindred down. My main concern is that in many societies family is not defined in terms of "blood." This is a really important point and although I am not sure that my new opeining is that great, I do think that whatever we end up with has to be neutral and more universal than defining family the way it is defined in the West. Rgamble, thanks -- and enculturation is indeed a word. Say hi to your cat! SR

  • Ok. Couldn't find it in an, albeit, older dictionary that was floating around the office. Guess we need to upgrade. This is a good read. Rgamble
    • I like the new intro, and agree that it's more general. Right. As to the various familial categories... maybe it would be better to mark the current ones as "anthropological", and then add on, "Also, sociologists sometimes add the following divisions..." e.g. single-parent, bourgeois, etc. Whatcha think? -- April
--April, I am glad you find the new opening acceptable. I also think your idea of distinguishing between anthropological and sociological approaches and terms is useful, but I do think there is more at stake than disciplinary differences and I think perhaps these other issues should be used in organizing it. For example, my sense is that anthropologists are trying to come up with culture-neutral terms and definitions based on a study of many non-stratified societies, whereas sociologists are looking mostly at stratified societies and trying to come up with terms and definitions that are useful in tackling specific (and situated) social problems owing to various threats to social solidarity including rapid modernization and also social divisions (class, race, ethnicity, etc). But I am not sure -- do you have a better sense of this? I leave it to you to reorganize the presentation as you see best, and perhaps to elaborate on what is at stake in these different views... SR
  • I think that the distinction between anthropological and sociological definitions should be made clear as April suggests but that SR's concerns over the fundamental differences between such definitions should be made clear too. Also, I liked the 'bullet' format of definitions better than the line break one currently there. Perhaps a listing like:

Anthropological definitions of the family use culture-neutral terms... ...Some of these definitions are:

  • Type 1: Definition
  • Type 2: Definition

Sociological definitions of the family use terms used in tackling specific social problems... Some of these definitions are:

  • Type a: Definition
  • Type b: Definition

My two cents at least for whomever does the reorg (not me! :) --Rgamble

Very nice write-up, much more comprehensive then the stub which no doubt stimulated its production. Now one little question: what is it that distinguishes a family from any other sort of living arrangement? Are 40 men in a military barracks a family?

Please answer in terms of sociology, by all means, but also give some other perspectives. There are some people, and if there ever were a majority there are apparently on the wane, who would say the 'pedia definition would include two lesbians. These people (and I'm not sure what to call them: conservatives, die-hard fools, fundamentalist assholes, or whatever Lee and JHK think I am) might define a family more exclusively, and I'd like to see their definition included and attributed to them. Maybe, even given a little more prominence, if that's not too much to ask.

Ed Poor

There are two very different ways to answer this question. It depends on whether you take a local or global perspective. From a global perspective -- I mean, if you compare men in a barracks to the whole range of "families" in all different cultures -- you could say that the men's barracks is a variation on the theme, a particular type of family. This is because any definition of family that will include families in NY and families in the Amazon and families in Australia would have to be a very broad definition of family.
But the definition from a local perspective, I mean, what a family is in America, is of course going to be much narrower. From a local perspective men in a barracks is not a family because we in America define a family as one thing, and men in a barracks as another. Perhaps it wasn't always this way, and perhaps it will not always be this way, but for now it is. So the question is, what do Americans mean by "family?" (But this is a culture-bound definition, not a universal objective definition). My sense is, family in America is meant to center on bonds of love and sexual relations. This may not be true in all cultures, but I think it is true here and explains why men in Barracks aren't a family. They may end up loving and having sex with one another, but that isn't the reason they all ccame to be in a barracks together (just as a married couple may end up in separate beds or rooms after thirty years, but that isn't what first brought them together).
As you point out, Americans are divided over what constitutes a family. For some Americans it must be monogamous and heterosexual. For others, it need not be. I suspect a lot of people would say two lesbians living together constitute a family if they love each other, are committed to each other, and have sex. The main point here is, Americans are divided. As far as norms and values go, there is no consensus. As far as actual behavior goes -- I mean, statistically what is most common -- I bet there is a lot of variation. I think any article on "the American Family" would have to point this out -- that there is no standard American family. Such an article would have to detail changing ideals (from the 1700s to the present) as well as debates over what the family is, and also provide statistics (how many US households consist of married monogamous heterosexual couples, how many etc...)
But this is not an article on the American family. It is an article on "family" in general. I believe that the article is NPOV, Ed. I believe that the definition and description provides room for your notions of the family, and accounts for them. The fact that it ALSO makes room for the other kinds of families that exist, not only in the US but in other cultures, does not make it biased, it makes it inclusive. Also, the article is on what kinds of families. Even though I have contributed a bit to this article, I do not think it anywhere expresses my own view of what the best family is or ought to be. And I do not think it would be apporpriate for the article to express what any one group of people thinks the best family is or ought to be. SR

With family (biology) split off into a separate article now, it might be a good idea to make this page into a full disambiguation page and move the rest of this article into its own subarticle. How about family (social)? Bryan Derksen

I don't think that is needed in this case. There is one far and away most widely used meaning of the word "family" and that article should remain here. All minor uses of the term (usually technical ones) should be parenthetically or preferably, naturally disambiguated and linked at the bottom of this page. We should probably try to avoid the creation of non-articles whenever we can, and I think this is one of those cases. --maveric149

The second paragraph says that a number of non-Western societies define or understand families with concepts other than the "blood relative" concept we have in the West. Would it be possible to provide one or two examples? I don't dispute the statement at all, just curious to learn more. Wesley

This is a little complicated because almost all ethnographers and ethnologists in the 19th century simply assumed that family was defined by blood-ties; when they described non-Western societies they used "blood-ties" as a basis for their descriptions. But the key document is a 1915 article "Kin and Kinship" in the Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics, by WHR Rivers (based on his research in lowland New Guinea). Another good source is David Schneider's A Critique of the Study of Kinship, in which he contrasts his dissertation analysis of the Yap (in the West Caroline Islands), in which he assumed that relationships were defined by blood, with a new analysis, in which he discards that assumption -- and he argues that his new analysis is superior and should be a model for the analysis of kinship in other societies. Slrubenstein

I would suggest we have at least a link to the "family values" movement, etc. Also, some discussion of the role in political discourse of the concept of the "family" -- it is a beloved term of the right, although most on the left would say they support families, they just define it more broadly than the right does (although a few on the left, really are quite hostile to the family as an institution, and would like to see it abolished--I would count myself among such people.) --- Mon.

I think this is a good idea, as long as it is in a linked article -- given that it is both a (interestingly) controversial topic, and as far as I know particular to the US. I would leave this article as a discussion of scholarly research on "family" in general, and put the politics in the linked article. Slrubenstein

[I'm inserting my later comment here. --from John]:

I feel that the discussion of "Family" is too mother-focussed. I refer to the section which begins: "The structure of families traditionally hinges on relations between parents and children, between spouses, or both. Consequently, there are three major types of family: matrifocal, consanguineal, and conjugal." Viz: "A matrifocal family consists of a mother and her children." "A consanguineal family consists of a mother and her children, and other people -- usually the family of the mother." "A conjugal family consists of one or more mothers and their children, and/or one or more spouses (usually husbands)." That section is what I think is too mother-focussed.

I believe the essence of "family" is that its members spend a substantial part of their lives living together with at least one supportive relationship within the family. If you like, you could impose the constraint that there has to be a close blood relationship between or among them.

Then (in a later stage of the discussion) moving on to "traditional" families, and admitting gender and sex words into the discussion, a family unit consisting of father, mother, and children could be described as one kind of family unit, without either gender of parent being presented as more significant than the other. Remarkably, the article when I saw it did not present this as one of the main types of family. (Nor did I see a father-centered family presented, while mother-centered families were presented as major types.)

Then finally, move on to a next stage of the discussion in which some types of families have roles based on gender.

The gender-neutral foundation, and the equal treatment of the genders in the foundational stages of the discussion, helps allow for some broader and deeper ranges of meaning for "family". For example, the primary function of "family" might be a spiritual one, in which a parent, regardless of gender, is a spiritual leader and the child is a follower. Or, the role of a parent might be to acculturate the children, or to economically support the children. Or, the core meaning of family might not be about "children" at all but rather a small group of people living together in emotional, financial, or labor support of each other: this would include a married couple which happens to be childless. That's a "family" too.

I get pretty tired of the women-centered views of the family, which my female friends use. That concept of family may have been originally based on biology and the deep past when men had to kill wild beasts for the family to eat. In post-stone-age times I would rather "family" be viewed in a way that allows the "humanity" of people to be at least as important as their animal biology, and viewed in a way that doesn't relegate males to a back-seat when it comes to forming the next generation and the cultural heirs of the parents.

For those who insist on a biological interpretation, so often with their emphases on female parenthood, I ask where are the other emphases? One could as well emphasize a male initiative in the procreative acts. Also, one could emphasize male physical dominance of the family (males are biologically naturally dominant because they tend to be bigger and stronger, which could be one reason why historically so many families have been headed by men -- though miraculously the article as I read it didn't consider male-headed families in its definitions of the main types of "family"). Was it just my imagination, or did most families really used to be headed by males?

Aside from biology, there are other things which could be emphasized in a discussion of family. There are spiritualities and forms of leadership. Don't these bear significantly upon family members too, as much as physical birth (not even remembered by the child) and breast milk?

If you admit female-centered emphases, why not also male-centered emphases? Back to biology, whose idea was it to engage in the procreative act, anyhow, and who made the important choice of a partner for procreation? Were males doing those things most of the time? If so then the true center of a human family is probably the male parent more than the female parent.

The families I've known have not tended to depend any more on mothers than fathers. Men are very important in most of these families, and no less important than the women. I don't insist on one bias or another, except to make a counter-argument when needed for balance.

And how about child-centered emphases? Doesn't a child matter as much as a parent, in many kinds of families? Maybe the members of a CHILD's family are the people who spend the most time with the child and the people who take care of the child the most? If you like, you can impose the constraint that only close blood relatives are included. That still doesn't distinguish gender. In some families I know, the male parents are the ones who spend the most time with the children, and spend the most time and energy taking care of the children, and are the more responsibly-acting of the two parents. Yet in regard to such families, many people (wayward mothers, family court judges, social workers, police, ...) blow them off the map by presuming that meaningful parenthood means motherhood, and placing an enormous burden of proof upon the male parent to prove his equality, in court and/or to all comers (e.g., police, sherriff, social workers) in order to get equal rights as a parent (and for the child to have equal rights of access to its father as to its mother).

I think the vast majority of current social discussions about family are either too backward, failing to see the humanity beyond mere biology, or too heavily influenced by the National Organization of Women and other women lobbyists. None of that has helped my children, who are better off as those female-centered biases are stripped away. [--John]

[end of John's later insertion]

I was unaware that same mother was the prime determination of brotherhood and sisterhood. As I understood it, a same father also qualifies. Is there any meaningful distinction here? -戴&#30505sv
Maybe. I'm not sure exactly how to express it, but there's (often?) an implicit assumption that while we know who the mother of the child(ren) is with certainty, we have no such certainty when it comes to the father. At least in the west, genetic relation is highly valued in this, and thus someone who's relation is more suspect is of lesser significance. I can certainly remember in High School being the only person in a class who would be disinterested in meeting their "real" parents if they were adopted (and I suspect the use of the qualifier "real" contains a lot of relevent info). And so on. WilyD 19:23, 10 April 2006 (UTC)

Request for History Section[edit]

What I'd really like to see in this article is a section on the Family in History and how it (or conceptions of it) has/have developed over time. The Jade Knight 00:52, 25 January 2006 (UTC)

Error in relatives chart ?[edit]

There might be an error in the relatives chart ( Due to some quirkyness in the English language, brothers and sisters of the grand parents are not called "grand uncle" and "grand aunt", but "great uncle" and "great aunt". At least so I've been told by many a native speaker. As I'm not a native speaker, could any native speaker check and correct the chart if necessary? Also, the chart or the article should maybe include reference to step-parents/children/sisters/brothers and half-sisters and brothers.

bestiarosa 5 jul 2006.

There is no error in this graphic. In the USA, people do frequently refer to "great" aunt/uncle/nephew/niece when they mean "grand" aunt/uncle/nephew/niece, but the generally accepted "official" name for that relationship is "Grand". If you think of it in parallel to parent/grand-parent/great-grand-parent/great-great-grand-parent you see the structural origination of aunt/grand-aunt/great-grand-aunt/great-great-grand-aunt. JackME 14:24, 9 July 2006 (UTC)
i dont this is right. They seem to be synonyms and both are reported in dictionaries such, OED, American Heritage. Who says that it is official? A genealogical society? If a certain group claims one term as official that is fine to note, but the situation of synonymous usage should also be reported. Doesnt calling this usage of great-aunt, etc. "casual" seem to be suggesting that these speakers dont know that they are talking about? I dont think this usage should be considered incorrect. OED also notes uses of great-great-aunt/uncle/father and grand-grand-father/etc.. peace – ishwar  (speak) 15:57, 9 July 2006 (UTC)


This topic begins with the statement "The structure of families traditionally hinges on relations between parents and children, on RELATIONS BETWEEN SPOUCES, or on both. Consequently, four major types of family exist:

patrifocal matrifocal consanguineal conjugal." (emphasis added)

It then goes on to describe the 4 types of family structures, none of which is based on relations between spouces.

This article clearly still needs a lot of work. 03:31, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

Conjugual is defined by relations between spouses. It is true that relations between parent and child or parent and siblings is across cultures more important, but still, relation between spouses is represnted here. Slrubenstein | Talk 04:37, 31 August 2006 (UTC)
If 'Conjugal' is defined by relations between spouces, the definition in the article is incorrect. The current definition includes relations between parents and their children but nowhere indicates that the relation between the parents/spouces is what defines it as a "conjugal" family.
i think it should become a featured article 19:43, 10 February 2007 (UTC)

Pets as Family[edit]

Some mention of pets as family should be included in the article body. While not everyone considers their pets to be members of the family, many (probably most for some species) do, and this should be recognized. - MSTCrow 17:02, 9 August 2007 (UTC)

You're wrong. Family members are human beings, animals are not.... that is unless you are desperate to the point of pseudo-family. I just checked with my dog and cat, neither one of them have any pets. TLAGT

TLAGT's comment is misinformed and inappropriate. I mean, name-calling (ie, "desperate") people who disagree with you? The majority of American pet owners at least likely consider their pets as "family." —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:08, 15 August 2009 (UTC)

Latin familia, from famula, servant[edit]

The origin of the word is fascinating. perhaps an expert on the subject could add something? Brinerustle 11:15, 24 September 2007 (UTC)

Capitalization: 'Man' vs. 'woman'[edit]

While reading, I tend to immediately correct what appear to me to be simple typographical errors. Thus, I corrected an instance where 'man' was capitalized. As I continued reading, however, I noticed that 'man' has been repeatedly capitalized, while 'woman' has not. I am neither an anthropologist nor a sociologist, so I don't know if this is some kind of standard procedure in those fields. Could someone either explain why the capitalization should remain or correct it? (Or let me know that I can correct it without worrying about reverts?) Thanks. Aryaman (☼) 20:21, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

  • When using man for the male gender, it should not be capitalized. When using it in the more generalized form where it just refers to humans (regardless of gender), it can be capitalized, although this is somewhat archaic. (talk) 19:47, 19 April 2008 (UTC)

The request for a new graphic[edit]

I've done a new graphic in png format. It can be viewed at Trouble is, I'm not confident enough to do the suggested replacing. If someone else would like to do it, feel free. Thanks. Rockyabq (talk) 06:38, 24 December 2007 (UTC)

Don´t know who Tyson is, don´t think he is a reliable source. the phrases the land of children and the land of cousins does not make sense. Your graphic reflects serious work but I suspect reflects either original researrch or fringe theories, not current research on families.

Well, first of all, it's not "my" graphic. It's the one here already displayed. Someone just requested that it be remade as a png. That's all I did. The words on the png are the same ones on the jpg that's been here. I don't know who Tysen is either.Rockyabq (talk) 20:31, 27 December 2007 (UTC)

Apparently Tysen Perszyk is one and the same as User:Hotcactuspepper . See Source: . Regards, --Edupedro (talk) 20:45, 23 March 2014 (UTC)


"According to many sociologists and anthropologists, the primary function of the family is to reproduce society, either biologically, socially, or both. Thus, one's experience of one's family shifts over time." This is erroneous because first, a family does not have to reproduce. There are single parents who are a family. There are gay and lesbian couples who have their own family. That goal is erroneous and I believe should be removed because it is not true. Also the goals of families with senior citizens is not to reproduce. Also, the citation of a book published in 1949 is old and outdated. The definition has changed in 60 years. Yialanliu (talk) 01:52, 11 February 2008 (UTC)

This describes a social norm. There are always exceptions to social norms. There is no society in which everyone follows a social norme the same way, or completely, and there are no social norms that are followed by everyone. Also, this sentence specifies the primary function. It has many other functions as well. This is implied by the use of the word "primary". Finally, this sentence is expressing the views of most anthropologists and sociologists. You will find something like this in most anthropology or sociology textbooks. It is not the truth, and NO Wikipedia article ever makes claims about "the truth." it is just a very notable view. All notable views should be represented. This one should be, as well as recent work emerging in parts of the US by Gay activists and advocates. But remember, the number of gay marriages is but a small fraction of all marriages in the world. Anthropologists make claims about the functions of the family by looking at a wide range of marriages, not just ones in Massachusetts or other states in the US. Slrubenstein | Talk 11:13, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
Well what I am trying to say is that the social norma has changed in 60 years. I believe that with the advent of more couples pushing the date of pregnancy back until after the start of a career and the increase in adoption, the idea has changed. Adopted family members are not due to procreation and because there is an ever larger number, the idea of a family based through reproduction has changed. Granted this idea is very popular in the past, now it's being changed. Also, I guess truth was a bad word choice because there really is no truth in the scientific definition, but I was trying to say that this theory is out dated and has been changed.Yialanliu (talk) 16:20, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
The introduction is not about the social norm in the United States. It is about the social norm globally. has it changed the same way in the Amazon? in New Guuinea? in China? in India? In Indonesia? In Pakistan? In the Sudan? In St. Kitts? In Nicaragua? We are not just talking about the US here. Slrubenstein | Talk 16:43, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
Please find any references I have made to the United States. I did not bring up Massachusetts or the US. You brought up those point. However, the current trend globally is that the birth rate are declining meaning that reproduction is less and less of a factor of having a family. Although one can argue that many countries in Africa have high birthrate, the converse is true in Europe where the birthrate is much lower than it was just 50 years ago. Yialanliu (talk) 02:58, 13 February 2008 (UTC)

It says the biological or social reproduction. Nowhere does it say that it is only or always biological reproduction. In any evnt, your example is a non-sequitor. changes in fecundity have long been studied by social scientists and I know of none who would say that decline in birthrate means that the family does not function to structure biological reproduction for that reason. Slrubenstein | Talk 11:29, 13 February 2008 (UTC)

A Change in Wording[edit]

the resulting relationship between a husband and wife

I removed this, and changed it to the following: 'the resulting relationship between two people'

A family does not always consist of a husband or wife. Some people raising children are not married, some are with partners of the same-sex.

Eirra (talk) 01:13, 20 March 2008 (UTC)

Agreed, Slrubenstein | Talk 12:59, 20 March 2008 (UTC)

Josef Fritzl[edit]

Hi there, I've added an external link to Josef Fritzl. What about this negative type of family? Best --Weissmann (talk) 05:30, 30 April 2008 (UTC)

This is an article about a social institution, it gives undue weight to single out one criminal. All families are unique, many deviate from the norm, many are criminal by the laws of their own society. One case should not be given prominence here. Slrubenstein | Talk 16:04, 30 April 2008 (UTC)

Added Image[edit]

I've added the :Image:Grandson.JPG to balanced out the article. There was a picute of a father and daughter, so Ithink it's fair to add a grand mother and grandson photo. Monzonda c",) 05:21, 3 June 2008 (UTC)

i have taken over both family and the family —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:57, 11 July 2008 (UTC)

Cohabitation as a sole sufficient criterion for family[edit]

How is cohabitation a sole sufficient criterion for family? As a student and young professional, I shared a house with lots of other people, but they weren't my family. Renting an apartment together is at best "friends" and at worst "housemates", not family. Can anyone provide reasonable back-up for the assertion that co-habitation alone qualifies as family? Otherwise this statement needs removing. Andrew Oakley (talk) 12:30, 7 November 2008 (UTC)

Where exactly does it say cohabitation is the sole criterion for family? I am having trouble finding it. Slrubenstein | Talk 16:55, 7 November 2008 (UTC)
First sentence of the article: "Family denotes a group of people affiliated by consanguinity, affinity, or co-residence." Note the use of "or", denoting that any one condition, on its own, will suffice. Andrew Oakley (talk) 17:30, 17 November 2008 (UTC)
Oh, okay, in parts of India, and in parts of the Amazon, families may be established through co-residence. This is described in pretty much any introduction to anthropology textbook. There are many families around the world that may include people related by all three means. I know there are more cases where "and often" would apply, rather than "or," but the definition needs to cover a wide range of cases. Slrubenstein | Talk 19:16, 17 November 2008 (UTC)
Do you have reliable sources that state that these housemates refer to themselves using the English word "family", or is it that their description of themselves using their local language is simply mistranslated as "family"? Andrew Oakley (talk) 21:54, 23 November 2008 (UTC)
No I do not. They use a word in their own language. Anthropologists translate it into English and use the word family. This is not a mistranslation, what it means is that, like many words, the English word "family" has different definitions depending on who is using it and for what purposes. Anthropologists and sociologists study diferent forms of the family around the world. This article is not about US families per se, it is about the scientific study of the family as a social institution. If you think this needs to be said more plainly in the lead, go for it. Slrubenstein | Talk 22:14, 23 November 2008 (UTC)
I am not American so I fail to see what your point about the US pertains to. Will change intro para accordingly. Andrew Oakley (talk) 10:24, 28 November 2008 (UTC)
Note that I have left in "affinity"; presumably these Indian/Amazonian housemates would still consider themselves affiliated by affinity, so they will still satisfy the condition for describing themselves as "family". The point is that co-habitation alone, without affinity, does not qualify as family; otherwise, you could describe the residents of a hotel or boarding hostel as "family" which is clearly untrue. Andrew Oakley (talk) 10:37, 28 November 2008 (UTC)
Also, you state "This is described in pretty much any introduction to anthropology textbook" in which case you should have no problem finding a reliable source to cite. Andrew Oakley (talk) 10:40, 28 November 2008 (UTC)

You make a fundamental error in logic. You believe that because cohabitation can be the sole basis for the family, all forms of cohabitation are families. That is simply a violation of logic. The article never says that all groups bound by common residence are families, as you seem to think. Slrubenstein | Talk 18:27, 28 November 2008 (UTC)

I'm not sure whether your native language is English. "Family denotes a group of people affiliated by consanguinity, affinity, or co-residence." means that any one of the four criteria are sufficient on their own, as discussed to death above. Your assertion would only be valid if the sentence were the other way around: "Co-residence denotes family" for instance. Andrew Oakley (talk) 15:21, 14 January 2009 (UTC)

No, my assertion is valid as written. That family may be a group affiliated by co-residence does not in any way imply that all groups of co-residents are families. Slrubenstein | Talk 17:16, 14 January 2009 (UTC)

Limits of Language Terms[edit]

The presence of a word for a kinship relation is sometimes used to prove that it is a distinct category. I don't know how common this is, but as a child growing up in the US, I never made a linguistic distinction between a blood aunt or uncle and an aunt or uncle by marriage, but I was always aware of the difference in each of my aunts and uncles. Thus the absence of the term does not necessarily designate the absence of the concept.Bostoner (talk) 04:08, 28 April 2009 (UTC)

Alternatives to a family[edit]

Besides being a relationship, a family is also the main component that automatically provides residence to an individual. Using this kind of method to provide residence/safety for the individual has some flaws:

  • if the individual has the fortune of being conceived in a family of which the parents are friendly and allow the child sufficient freedom of choice, the individual may feel that he is "in the clear" and cannot get homeless or deteriorate his life by much, no matter what
  • if the individual has the misfortune of being conceived in a family of which the parents are unfriendly or violent and/or do not allow the child sufficient freedom of choice, the individual may not become a good employee (e.g. if he dislikes the job; by being pushed into it by his parents, ...) and generally may not have a produceful nor happy life
  • the individual may in both cases not be so focused on being innovative, or becoming very adept in a job, ... hereby decreasing the economy

Therefore, a alternative could be that the government provides financial support to the age of 18 combined with a free choice of education (so that the individual may train himself optimally to a job he chooses). As no further financial certainty is guaranteed, the individual will be heavily encouraged to become proficient in a job, be innovative or find other means to ensure a financial means of existence. Conception of the individual itself would be government-chosen; with the use of surrogate mothers/fathers.

This method could thus be economically more attractive to the state and it also provides other benefits (eg increased globalisation; as the individual may travel around without being tied to anything, ...)

Add a section about this in the article. Thanks, —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:41, 10 May 2009 (UTC)

hi icarly so ilove i carly it rock so kooi —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:28, 17 January 2010 (UTC)

Page illegally copied?[edit]

Page has been copied by an upstart organization with no apparent acknowledgment:

No link with the CC-BY-SA site "Familypedia". Robin Patterson (talk) 10:51, 31 January 2010 (UTC)

Political Functions[edit]

The subject "Political Functions" has major problems. Firstly, it only focuses on European families when Wikipedia aims to be universal. Secondly, it's only source is the problematic, obscure "The Oldest Europeans," a text that seeks to find the root of all society in post-glacial European peoples.

The political functions of the family are massive, from the Kennedy Dynasty to medieval noble lines to East African clan structures. This section needs a complete rehaul. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Aebrynis (talkcontribs) 05:06, 11 March 2010 (UTC)

Inbreeding = Incest?[edit]

The article say under Inbreeding that "A study performed by scientists from Iceland found that mating with a relative (incest) can significantly increase the number of children in a family. Many societies consider inbreeding unacceptable." Cousin marriage IS Inbreeding but is Not incest in most of the world.--Lord Don-Jam (talk) 07:27, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

the implications of this section are absurd in that they seemingly imply that higher procreative rates are a result of inbreeding/incest. I don't believe however that there is a credible genetic basis for this however but rather this is a distortion in reading the data and an exemplification of the "correlation does not imply causality" statistical rule. It is much more likely that one's socio-economic level is both an indicator of their likeliness to both inbreed and have more children then the rest of the population. — Preceding unsigned comment added by SomeUser5050 (talkcontribs) 00:15, 18 January 2011 (UTC)

Value incorrect[edit]

It says a value of 1.563%. This is incorrect; it has to equal 1/64. In order for it to be right, 1.563 * 64 has to equal 100 exactly. But it isn't. It's 100.032. Georgia guy (talk) 14:28, 3 August 2011 (UTC) (This is located on the chart of relationships in the kinship terminology section of the article.) Georgia guy (talk) 14:28, 3 August 2011 (UTC)

It's rounding error. The exact value of 1/64 is 0.015625, or 1.5625%, but this rounds to 1.563%. Rounding is often used to make longer decimals fit in smaller places, or to make them seem less picayune than, say, 1/10,000 of a percent. --Piledhigheranddeeper (talk) 17:47, 1 May 2012 (UTC)

Error in the family-treepicture[edit]

The husband of my paternal aunt is not my aunt! Please correct that, I unfortunately have no Idea how to do that. (talk) 21:39, 24 March 2013 (UTC)

The immediate and primary example used to describe Family is mother and father and feel that this entry would benefit from using language that is more inclusive in order to reflect members that may comprise of a family.CNoemiM (talk) 01:37, 21 October 2013 (UTC)