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Relative deprivation and labour conflict during Spain’s industrialization: the Bilbao estuary, 1914–1936

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  • Stefan Oliver Houpt

    () (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Getafe, Madrid, Spain)

  • Juan Carlos Rojo Cagigal

    (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Getafe, Madrid, Spain)

Abstract

What drove social conflict in Spain’s industrial areas in the period before the Spanish Civil War? This paper is concerned with contrasting the determinants of working-class conflict in northern Spain at the beginning of the twentieth century. Our hypothesis is that the key determinant of conflicts in emerging industrial areas during the interwar period was the struggle to obtain satisfactory family income in a context of combined high price fluctuation, unemployment and economic boom and bust. We suggest two new ways to decipher how economic factors interact with labour conflict. We introduce the family as the relevant income unit when considering wage struggles and relative deprivation. And secondly, we study the reactions to short-term variations of income on families by using monthly rather than quarterly or annual data.

Suggested Citation

  • Stefan Oliver Houpt & Juan Carlos Rojo Cagigal, 2014. "Relative deprivation and labour conflict during Spain’s industrialization: the Bilbao estuary, 1914–1936," Cliometrica, Journal of Historical Economics and Econometric History, Association Française de Cliométrie (AFC), vol. 8(3), pages 335-369, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:afc:cliome:v:8:y:2014:i:3:p:335-369
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Strikes; Relative deprivation; Industrialization; Labour relations; Interwar period; Spain;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D19 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Other
    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • J52 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - Dispute Resolution: Strikes, Arbitration, and Mediation
    • J53 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - Labor-Management Relations; Industrial Jurisprudence
    • N34 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Europe: 1913-

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