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had an average of 8.4 family members with them. But kinship alone seems to have limited power as a cohesive social force. Napoleon Chagnon, in his study of the Yanomamo, noticed that as village populations grew larger, the average degree of relatedness would decrease. The population would then split, usually along kinship lines, with the result that people within the two smaller groups would be more highly related to each other. "Kinship-organized groups can only get so large before they begin falling apart," Chagnon writes. Disputes break out over the usual things—sexual trysts, infidelity, snide comments or veiled insults. "As villages grow larger, internal order and cooperation become difficult, and eventually factions develop: Certain kin take sides with each other, and social life becomes strained. There appears to be an upper limit to the size of a group that can be cooperatively organized by the principles of kinship, descent and marriage, the 'integrating' mechanisms

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