richard phillips on settler colonialism and the nuclear family


Richard Phillips, “Settler Colonialism and the Nuclear Family”, Canadian Geographer / Le Géographe Canadien 53, 2, 2009:


Colonial societies revolved around nuclear families. Though they often seemed natural, universal and inevitable, colonial nuclear families were in fact produced through a series of laws and customs that regulated sex and marriage. These legal, social and cultural practices conspired to make the family an adaptable and formidable social institution, both a pillar and a beneficiary of colonization. Hegemonic but not universal, family members were privileged over other members of colonial societies, who not only survived on the margins and in the shadows of colonialism, but also played crucial roles in resettlement societies.

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