To Stay or to Migrate: Siblings and Life Transitions in 19th century Ribeira Seca, Azores

Diogo Paiva, Miguel Fonseca, Paulo Matos

Onderzoeksoutput: Bijdrage aan wetenschappelijk tijdschrift/periodieke uitgaveArtikelWetenschappelijkpeer review


Although research on the life courses of siblings has been underway for the past decades in Europe, Portuguese historical demography research landscape has been lagging behind on this particular subject. This paper is the first step towards a better understanding on the influence of sibling ties in 19th century Azores, by analysing a sample taken from the Ribeira Seca parish, São Jorge Island. The sample comprises a selection of elder siblings born between 1820 and 1850 and the corresponding set of brothers and sisters. The primary data was obtained through parish records, but secondary sources as libri status animarum, testaments, passport records and fiscal lists were also used to complement the main database.
By applying a statistical analysis, including a regression model, this paper aims to understand to what degree sibling ties influenced important life decisions as migration and marriage. Three central research questions are formulate to guide through the analytical process: Were the eldest sons more likely to migrate? Did the younger sisters have the same marriage opportunities or were they supposed to stay at home and assist their parents? How did inheritance patterns affected their decisions?
Obtained results lead to a redefinition of individual roles within the family circle, new perspectives on how and what decisions were taken in a 19th century Azorean community under the pressure of limited resources, inheritance patterns, marriage opportunities and a strong call for migration.
Originele taal-2Engels
TijdschriftThe History of the Family
StatusGepubliceerd - 17 jul 2018


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