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Income inequality in central Spain, 1690-1800

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  • Santiago-Caballero, Carlos

Abstract

This paper studies the evolution of income inequality in central Spain during the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, taking as case study the province of Guadalajara. The first part of the paper presents the sources and the dataset that was created to estimate income inequality using grain tithes. The second section shows that through the period grain represented the lion share of total income and therefore that it can be used as a reliable proxy. The following part of the paper introduces an analysis of income inequality in the province during the period 1690-1800 and concludes that inequality decreased during the last third of the eighteenth century. Finally the paper addresses this unexpected result and concludes that it was consequence of the success of the land reform carried out by the central government in the late 1760s. The reform was a success in Guadalajara, thanks to the characteristics of its population and the lack of bargaining power of pressure groups.

Suggested Citation

  • Santiago-Caballero, Carlos, 2011. "Income inequality in central Spain, 1690-1800," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 83-96, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:exehis:v:48:y:2011:i:1:p:83-96
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    1. Steckel, Richard H. & Moehling, Carolyn M., 2001. "Rising Inequality: Trends In The Distribution Of Wealth In Industrializing New England," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 61(1), pages 160-183, March.
    2. Stanley L. Engerman & Kenneth Lee Sokoloff, 2002. "Factor Endowments, Inequality, and Paths of Development Among New World Economies," Economía Journal, The Latin American and Caribbean Economic Association - LACEA, vol. 0(Fall 2002), pages 41-110, August.
    3. O’Rourke, Kevin H. & Williamson, Jeffrey G., 2002. "When did globalisation begin?," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 6(1), pages 23-50, April.
    4. Simpson, James, 1989. "La produccion agraria y el consumo español en el siglo XIX," Revista de Historia Económica / Journal of Iberian and Latin American Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(2), pages 355-388, September.
    5. O'Rourke, K, 1997. "The European Grain Invasion 1870-1913," Papers 97/02, College Dublin, Department of Political Economy-.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Agrarian history Inequality Pressure groups Institutions;

    JEL classification:

    • N33 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • N53 - Economic History - - Agriculture, Natural Resources, Environment and Extractive Industries - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • O18 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure
    • Q15 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Land Ownership and Tenure; Land Reform; Land Use; Irrigation; Agriculture and Environment
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement

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