The family Tree And The law
Many of us do not know who our relatives are. We have no idea where they are. Unlike in the olden days, families no longer sit together to bond. We have become so busy in our day-to-day activities. We spend little time with our close family unit. Many children live with their single parents and do not have a clue of who the other parent is.
Others have migrated and moved on into the wider plane. The effect of this is that we do not know our roots or our relatives and family members. This is very dangerous. We need to take a step ahead and out of our comfort zone. I am challenging you to start drawing your family tree. It is a living tree that you will realise is so important for us. This will help you know your relatives. You will be shocked to learn that the person next door is related to you.
The family tree is very important and it will act as a guide and or protection for the family. Your daughter won’t get married to her distant cousin out of ignorance. The teenagers are meeting in the urban areas and even abroad and getting intimate just to realise too late in the day that they are relatives. The law in Kenya prohibits marriages to relatives. Marriages to such persons are null upon the presentation of a petition to the court. Marriages to relatives where the parties are within the prohibited degree of consanguinity (where natural or legal) or affinity are void under Section 14 (1) of the Matrimonial Causes Act.
You clearly need to develop the family tree now.Genealogy is the study of families and the tracing of their lineages and history. Genealogists use oral traditions, historical records, genetic analysis, and other records to obtain information about a family and to demonstrate kinship and pedigrees of its members. The results are often displayed in charts or written as narratives.
The pursuit of family history tends to be shaped by several motivations, including the desire to carve out a place for one's family in the larger historical picture, a sense of responsibility to preserve the past for future generations, and a sense of self-satisfaction in accurate storytelling.
Genealogists who seek to reconstruct the lives of each ancestor consider all historical information to be "genealogical" information. Traditionally, the basic information needed to ensure correct identification of each person are place names, occupations, family names, first names, and dates. However, modern genealogists greatly expand this list, recognising the need to place this information in its historical context in order to properly evaluate genealogical evidence and distinguish between same-name individuals. Family names are simultaneously one of the most important pieces of genealogical information, and a source of significant confusion for researchers.
In many cultures, the name of a person refers to the family to which he or she belongs. This is called the family name, surname, or last name. Patronymics are names that identify an individual based on the father's name. The transmission of names across generations, marriages and other relationships, and immigration may cause difficulty in genealogical research.
For instance, women in many cultures have routinely used their spouse's surnames. When a woman remarried, she may have changed her name and the names of her children; only her name; or changed no names. Her birth name (maiden name) may be reflected in her children's middle names; her own middle name; or dropped entirely.
Children may sometimes assume stepparent, foster parent, or adoptive parent names. Because official records may reflect many kinds of surname change, without explaining the underlying reason for the change, the correct identification of a person recorded identified with more than one name is challenging. Surname data may be found in trade directories, census returns, birth, death, and marriage records.
It’s fun developing the family tree.