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In order to study psychological phenomena cross-culturally, it is necessary to understand the different types of family in cultures throughout the world and also how family types are related to cultural features of societies. This article discusses: The definitions and the structure and functions of family; the different family types and relationships with kin; the ecocultural determinants of variations of family types, e.g, ecological features, means of subsistence, political and legal system, education and religion; changes in family in different cultures; the influence of modernization and globalization on family change throughout the world.

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