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The Origin of the Family, Private Property and the

Friedrich Engels

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .nd or the sister on the opposite, who can be brothers and sisters no longer. The latter have mutual parents no more, neither father nor mother nor both together. And for this reason the class of nephews and nieces, male and female cousins, here becomes necessary for the first time. Under the former family order this would have been absurd. The American system of kinship, which appears absolutely paradoxical in any family form founded on monogamy, is rationally explained and naturally confirmed in its most minute details by the Punaluan family. Wherever this system of kinship was in force, there the Punaluan family or at least a form akin to it must also have existed.

This family form, the existence of which in Hawaii was actually demonstrated, would have been transmitted probably by all Polynesia, if the pious missionaries, similar to the Spanish monks in America, could have looked upon such anti-Christian relations as being something more than simply a "horror.". . . Read More

Community Reviews

Most of the work outlined in this book has been disproved. It is rudimentary, a great summation of mid-19th century anthropology. I like his analysis of Iroquois tribes as compared with Far Eastern configurations of the family. Basically his argument is that pre-capitalist societies and non-weste...more

This is a very interesting work, specially considering the time when it was written. Engels, being very modern for his time, portrays how the first class antagonism in history coincides with the development of a patriarchal society, as man started to settle down and gain private properties. He al...more

كما يدل العنوان يتناول الكتاب مباحث ثلاثة:

1-الحياة الاجتماعية في المجتمعات البدائية التي تكونت من العشيرة ذات الحق الأمي كوحدة بناء للمجتمع (القبيلة) وكيفية التزاوج وتطورها من الزواج الجماعي إلى الزواج الثنائي ثم بعدها الزواج الفردي، وكيف تحول هذا الوضع الاجتماعي تدريجياً إلى ما نحن عليه الآن من...more

نظر به باور رسوخکرده در ذهن بشر مبنی بر نحوهی پیدایش انسان و شکلگیری جوامع و اهمیت نهاد خانواده که در دیدگاههای مذهبی ادیان ابراهیمی به اوج خود میرسند، به مدت قرنها درخشانترین ذهنهای بشری به خطا خانواده یکتاهمسر و دولت را به عنوان نهادهایی ازلی-ابدی و همچنین دارای ارزش اولی میدانستند و بیهوده میک...more

One of the very first IMPORTANT works that I ever read in university. This provoked discussion among my friends and felt RELEVANT despite being so very old. If Karl Marx is too 'dry' for you (or too long!) then try Engels, Marx's tag team partner in thought! --Jen from Quebec :0)

Ενα πραγματικά διαφωτιστικό βιβλίο βασιζόμενο στον διαλεκτικό υλισμό. Κανει λογο για την εξελικτική πορεία της κοινωνίας με κατάληξη την γένεση του κράτους το οποιο θεμελιώνεται στην διαβάθμιση των ανθρώπων σε κοινωνικές τάξεις με αντικρουόμενα συμφέροντα. Αναφερει επίσης τις ενδιάμεσες μεταβατικ...more

The book, written in 1884, examines controversies of the time as to the origin of the State. Research and knowledge available up to that point seem to point to common levels of human progress which the author says confirms his idea that society was once based on a communistic model. He cites info...more

Introduction
Note on the Text

--The Origin of the Family, Private Property and the State

Glossary of Some Contemporary Terms and Concordance with Engels's Usage
Index

Honestly it took me forever to read this (i think i started sometime last year) because outside of the fact that Engels simply *is not a good writer* (he isn't) and some of the examples in here are made up colonial anthropology (which they are) and don't really hold water as examples (you would g...more

Friedrich Engels takes you on a tour around the evolution of the human society into the current establishment we take for granted as the ever-existing standard. No doubt there are many holes left in this study of anthropology, it provides a systematic study into the transformation of an egalitari...more

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