What Explains the Missing Girls in Nineteenth‐Century Spain?

19 Pages Posted: 17 May 2020

Date Written: February 2020

Abstract

Infant and childhood sex ratios in nineteenth‐century Spain were abnormally high, thus pointing to some sort of unexplained excess female mortality. This article analyses internal regional variation and shows that certain economic and social factors mitigated gender discrimination against newborn and/or young girls. In particular, the presence of wage labour opportunities for women and the prevalence of extended families in which different generations of women cohabited had beneficial effects on girls’ survival. Likewise, infant and child sex ratios were lower in dense, more urbanized areas.

Suggested Citation

Beltrán Tapia, Francisco J. and Gallego‐Martínez, Domingo, What Explains the Missing Girls in Nineteenth‐Century Spain? (February 2020). The Economic History Review, Vol. 73, Issue 1, pp. 59-77, 2020, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3598417 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ehr.12772

Francisco J. Beltrán Tapia (Contact Author)

University of Cambridge

Trinity Ln
Cambridge, CB2 1TN
United Kingdom

Domingo Gallego‐Martínez

University of Zaragoza

Gran Via 2
Zaragoza, 50005
Spain

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