Myfamily is referred to as ‘the Johnsons’. It is an extendedfamily. There are family members that live close to each other whileothers are settled in far countries and visit us occasionally.However, with the introduction of modern communication we are alwaysin touch with one another. In my culture, we value and exist as anextended family where the grandparents provide a leading role.Besides, the grandparents provide a cultural identity that is passedto the future generations. My grandparents passed on a majority ofthe family re union traditions that are held to date by our family.For example, the name of my family evolved from my late grandfatherwho was a successful businessperson (Bauer, 2010).
Accordingto the African- American cultures, it is the role of the male toprovide for the family while the females cater for the children.Consequently, my grandfather had established a pawnshop that wascommon among the locals. The shop managed to grow into a localsupermarket named as ‘the Johnson mart’. The popularity of thebusiness emanated from the fact that it was the only supermarket thatprovided fresh groceries. In the beginning, my grandfather was theonly attendant. As the business expanded, my grandfather called uponhis sons to come and assist in running the business. My grandmotherwas a nurse before the birth of my father and aunties. She left heremployment to cater for the children during their young age. Mygrandfather became famous among the locals since he frequentlyinteracted with his customers to establish their preferences so hecould stock the shop appropriately (Castellano, 2002).
Asan extended family, we coexist together. There are beliefs passedfrom my grandparents that guide the operations within the family. Mygrandfather established a culture of competition within the familyhe believes that the males should excel more than the females. Themain reason was that females have a lot to take care of in the familysetting such as catering for the children and other family chores.Consequently, my grandfather argued that women are not able toventure into a lot of income generating activities (Aborampah, 2011).
Inmy family, it is claimed that women become doctors as men thrive inbusiness. The men’s practical understanding in business is relatedto the inheritance from my great grandfather while the women skillsin healthcare are related to as an inheritance from my grandmotherwho was a nurse. As kids, my father and aunties never went to thehospital for treatment. Instead, my grandmother would treat themwhile they were at home (Bauer, 2010).
Itis true that the women are smarter than men in my family are. I havea twin sister whom we are of the same age. We have grown undersimilar conditions. My sister has always outsmarted me in class. Iremember copying her assignments whenever I found it hard to completeit on my own. There were instances that she coached me in Christianeducation, languages, and home science. I always made sure that Ibeat her in physics and mathematics (Bauer, 2010).
Mydad always insisted that I should not let my sister excel inacademics than I did. His first actions after every semester were tocompare my sister and me. Early alone, I was not aware of the reasonswhy my father would insist that I compete with my sister. It wasuntil I consulted one of my nephews. He insisted that his dad tooinsisted that he performs better than his female siblings do. Ourfathers insisted that we had to go to schools that are more expensivethan our sisters are. During most of my dad’s visits, he would findout how I was fairing with my studies. Besides, he would enquireabout anything I needed to improve my grades (Castellano, 2002).
Thepractical understanding of business by men emanated from their earlyexposure by my grandfather. It is believed that afterward, my fatherand the brothers joined to assist in running the company. They wouldreport to work immediately after they got home from school. Only themale children were allowed to run the business while the females wereleft to assist in running the family errands at home (Aborampah,2011).
Theearly exposure of my father and his brothers in running the businessmade them experts in commerce. My grandfather always insisted onbeing frugal in business transactions. However, the male childrenwere too busy running the business that their school performance wasaffected. On the other hand, the sisters to my father always hadenough time to finish their homework and study. Consequently, theybecame academically successful (Bauer, 2010).
Analysis and conclusions
Asingle family consists of a single parent that tries to raise theirchildren alone. Most of the individual families communicate in theeffort to solve some of their common problems. In an extended family,two or many adults that live together, and they assist one another onissues such as raising the children. In an extended family, thegrandparents serve as key decision makers and as originators ofcultures. The principal advantage of the extended family is thestability it provides to the members. The culture continues evenafter some of the parents’ divorce. In contrast, single parents aredeficient of cultural backgrounds (Castellano, 2002).
Bauer, E.(2010). TheCreolisation of London kinship mixed African-Caribbean and whiteBritish extended families, 1950-2003.Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press.
Castellano,M. (2002). Aboriginalfamily trends: Extended families, nuclear families, families of theheart. Ottawa: VanierInstitute of the Family.
Aborampah, O.(2011). Extendedfamilies in Africa and the African diaspora.Trenton, N.J.: Africa World Press.