People transform inherited cultural patterns to serve their needs under new circumstances. Networks of kindred relationships exemplify this process. Under socialist conditions in Bulgaria, kindred relationships assist in people 's transitions from cooperative farming to the working class, and from rural to urban life. Kin connections also contribute to solving life problems for which social solutions are not yet adequately institutionalized. Research should examine kin networks in their contemporary roles, rather than viewing the importance of kinship connections as merely an anachronism.