Archive for April 12th, 2019


Kinship in the Sea of Stars (A to Z, K)

12 April, 2019

The Gods War and the Sundering were hugely disruptive to societies across the Sea of Stars, religious certainties crumbled, the world shattered and everything was in flux.  Weather patterns changed, seas poured away, everything changed and peoples moved, often in great numbers, in search of safety and certainty.  These waves of refugees and migrants washed up near and far changing the composition of many a land and it was decades before the turmoil settled down, partly imposed from the top down as the dragons took charge of their new dominions and partly due to the changes slowing and the new world stabilizing.

With so much turmoil social systems had to adapt or break apart.  Traditions that relied upon religious sanction were particularly hard hit, no small number simply transferred their allegiance to the Sun, the only visible surviving god, and tried to rebuild.  Others turned to the newly triumphant dragons for guidance, adopting Dominae or other draconic beliefs in their attempt to find a new way forward.  A few turned from faith entirely seeking solace in philosophy.

Marriage!With the disruption to families, new ways to organize them were often found: adoptions, fostering and various constellations of marriages were tried and, in some cases, became the new traditions.  The Anjovians from the ice fields on the far spinward part of the Sea of Stars practice marriages exclusively between two couples.  No small number of cultures are matrilineal, tracing decent through the female line.  Contract and limited time marriages are popular in some cultures.  Same sex relationships, and even marriages, are not uncommon in some cultures as there are ways to provide for reproduction and continuation of the family line.

Adoptions and fostering remain common, sharing skills and building ties between families and regions.  Many towns and villages have yearly exchanges to maintain ties running back to the aftermath of the Sundering where one place sent aid to another and that kindness is remembered and built on through the years. The Sheth, a group of grey-skinned humans, adopt children (especially orphans) and feed them a special diet to turn their skin grey to continue their distinctive culture and appearance.  Adoptions are one of the ways that the Draconic Houses increase their numbers, seeking out and recruiting skilled and talented people, sometime even ascending them to the lower levels of the draconic bloodlines.

Kinship is both complex and flexible in the Sea of Stars.

Notes: Image from the Wellcome Collection used under CC BY.




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