Rural History 2015

Panel 33

Organizers: Soto, David (1); Gingrich, Simone (2)

Affiliation: 1: Universidad Pablo de Olavide, sevilla, Spain; 2: Institut für Soziale Ökologie, Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt, Austria

Title: Inequality in rural societies of the 19th and 20th centuries: approaches from a biophysical perspective

"Distribution of land, labour and capital is a crucial factor describing rural societies and explaining changes in agriculture and forestry. The distribution of land, labour and capital has been investigated in rural history, and has been shown to vary greatly in space and time. Liberal revolutions have been identified as major causes in changing the distribution of land, labour and capital in rural societies. But the historiography has devoted less attention to the biophysical dimension of inequality.
This session aims to link issues of social and economic inequality to a biophysical reading of agricultural industrialization. In recent years, the research strand of long-term socio-ecological research has provided empirical evidence of the environmental constraints and effects of agricultural change. It has been proposed that social inequality may have been one factor forcing the industrialization of agriculture in Europe. This session adresses issues of inequality in European rural societies of the 19th and 20th century from a biophysical perspective. Presentations deal with the distribution of resources in the 19th and 20th centuries in several European local and regional case studies. Assessment of biophysical characteristics of specific social groups are adressed based on empirical evidence and derived socio-ecological indicators.
The papers in this session tackle previously underresearched questions, including (1) how did the biophysical distribution of land and resources vary in space and time, (2) which environmental effect did the actitivities of specific social groups exerce upon the environment, (3) to which extent were specific social groups able to provide a living from agricultural production, (4) what role did institutional change (such as liberal revolutions or agrarian politics) play in the evolution of inequality, and (5) which role may social inequality have played in the industrialization of agriculture?"



Chair: David Soto, Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Sevilla, Spain

Paper 1: Effects of inequality in Socio-ecological Transition. A case study from Southern Spain

Juan Infante Amate; Inmaculada Villa; Antonio Herrera; David Soto; Antonio Cid; Roberto García Ruiz; Gloria Guzmán; Eduardo Aguilera; Manuel González de Molina, Pablo de Olavide University, Spain

Paper 2: Sustainability, Exclusiveness and Inequality in the Commons. Insights from a Navarrese Case Study

José-Miguel Lana, Public University of Navarre, Spain

Paper 3: Peasants as socio-ecological agents? Distribution of land and biomass flows in rural 19th-century Austria

Simone Gingrich; Michael Neundlinger; Alexander Remesch; Veronika Gaube, Alpen-Adria University, Austria

Paper 4: Landowners, agricultural labour force and food consumption: The unequal socio-metabolic profiles of two rural communities in Catalonia (Sentmenat) and Mallorca (Esporles) in the mid-19th century

Inés Marco, University of Barcelona, Spain; Roc Padró, University of Barcelona, Spain; Enric Tello, University of Barcelona, Spain; Ramon Garrabou, Autonomous University of Barcelona, Spain; Gabriel Jover, University of Girona, Spain


Suggested deadline for sending completed papers 31 july 2015

© 2014 Rural History 2015