Definitions of compound family from across the academic landscape. There does not seem to be any offical dictionary definition.
Academic Definitions of Compound Family
by a compound family I mean a man, his wife (wives), his married sons, their wives and children, and his unmarried sons and daughters(Nagashima, 1976: 44-45)
a concrete group formed through the amalgamation of nuclear family units or parts of them such as polygynous household consisting of one man, his two or more wives, and their respective children or a family group constituted by remarried widows or divorcees with children from previous marriage. This type of family need not have common residence.(Mahale, 1987: 2-3)
The polygynous compound family consists of a husband, each of his wives and such children as they have between them. The polyandrous compound family consists of a wife, each of her husbands and all their children.(Turner, 1969: 8)
one nuclear family in the senior generation living with two or more nuclear families and children in the younger generation (e.g. a couple living with two or more sons, daughters-in-law and grandchildren)(Bohong et al., 2009: 24)
The Compound family among the koro comprises a man, his wives and children. They make up a compound family because it is based on a polygamous marriage, which is a complex legal marriage with a common man linking all the wives and the children.(Abraham Gojeh, 2004: 55)
The compound family, generally speaking is an amalgam of nuclear family units. The OKPALA, the eldest male of the oldest surviving family in the compound, traditional heads it. The polygamous family provides a good example of this type. Naturally, a compound family does not need to be polygamous before it becomes a compound or corporate family as it may also be comprised of a nuclear family widows of the OKPALA’s brother and their offspring.(Francis, 2023: 44-45)
the compound family unit occurs when the male has children with two or more wives(Delgadillo, 2016: 13)
compound families result when a widow or widower with children by a first marriage enters into a second marriage into which children are born. This gives relationships of half-siblings, step-parent and step-child. Compound families can also be as a result of polygamous marriages.(Kawira, 2014: 18)
consists of different units of extended families, usually of common descent that live together as a collective unit, usually within a larger unit called village, community or town. This is usually aimed at reducing separation between families and creating full joint participation in social activities. The anchor for this common hold is kinship.(Uweke & Nyorere, 2016: 51)
an overlapping set of nuclear families, each with the same man as family head. It consists of a man (head of households); his wives and concubines who live in different homestead with their children. In this case, the wives become head of their own respective household while the man rules and runs all households. This kind of family is mostly popular amongst traditional West African societies.(Jackson, 2015: no pagination)
Abraham Gojeh, L. (2004). The Koro Chiefdom of Kaduna State. Tereship Publishers Enterprise.
Bohong, L., Yongying, Z., & Yani, L. (2009). Conditions of Work and Employment Programme. Conditions of Work and Employment Series, (22).
Delgadillo, R. C. (2016). Who Are We Really?: Latin American Family, Local and Micro-Regional Histories, and Their Impact on Understanding Ourselves.
Francis, C. (2023). Effect Of Ngwo Culture And Management In Igbo Traditional Setting: Empirical Assessment Of Amadikwu Uboji Ngwo Community In Enugu State, South East, Nigeria. Advance Journal Of Current Research, 8(7), 38–60.
Jackson, J. (2015). The Institution of the Family, Marriage, Kinship and Descent. In Abasi-Ekong, E. (ed.); Selected Topics in Nigeria Peoples and Culture. Benin City, Dimaf Publishers.
Kawira, J. F. (2014). A semantic analysis of Kimeru kinship terms.
Mahale, M.N. (1987). The adolescents, their family situations and the education. Delhi, India: Mittal Publications.
Nagashima, N. (1976). Boiling and roasting: an account of the two descent based groupings among the iteso of uganda. Hitotsubashi Journal of Social Studies, 8(1 (8)), 42–62.
Turner, C. (1969). Family and Kinship in Modern Britain. New York: London : Routledge & Kegan Paul.
Uweke, M.U. and Nyorere, O.I. (2016). Family Types in Nigeria. In: The Nigerian Child and Youth Development. Nigeria: Cle-Print Venture Ltd.