This study investigates how parents select the names of their children. Anthropological research on naming is very sparse, despite the immense power of names to reflect cultural variables, such as: kinship, gender relations, socioeconomic class relations, and differences in taste and personal preference. I surveyed a sample of parents at three daycare facilities in a small town in the Midwest about their children’s names and how they chose those names. My findings indicate that kin naming plays a significant role, but many parents find a balance between choosing a name with “meaning” and choosing a name based on their personal taste and popular, contemporary aesthetics. This study found that many parents strive to individualize their children through naming, yet they also use it as a way to establish their children’s place in their kin network and culture.
Sociology and Anthropology
Close, Haley Lisa, "Hello, I Love You, Won’t You Tell Me Your Name?: An Anthropological Investigation of Naming" (2012). Senior Independent Study Theses. Paper 1121.
Bachelor of Arts
Senior Independent Study Thesis Exemplar
© Copyright 2012 Haley Lisa Close