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Status, estate, or profession?: Social stratification via titles in 1730s Sweden
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of History. (SESO)
2017 (English)In: Scandinavian Journal of History, ISSN 0346-8755, E-ISSN 1502-7716Article in journal (Refereed) In press
Abstract [en]

This article focuses on how social stratification was performed in everyday practice in 1730s Sweden. By studying the titles people were given in the court material of three communities – Uppsala town, Lagunda härad, and Sala town with its silver mine – three factors defining social categorisation can be identified: status, estate, and profession. Only people who rose above the commoners were entitled, which means that all titles denoted status. Some titles were shared by different social groups who had little in common, and therefore cannot be said to mark anything other than status. Other titles were exclusive to definable groups. Among those, some were given to groups whose exclusivity was based on legal and fiscal privileges, rather than education or competence. They were simply feudal corporations, or estates. In other groups – all defined by occupations – the members had completed specialist education that included formal exams. In those, social stratification was the result of professionalism.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis Group, 2017.
Keyword [en]
professionalism, social categories, estate society, titles, eighteenth-century Sweden
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Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-309054DOI: 10.1080/03468755.2016.1265853OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-309054DiVA: diva2:1051497
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Available from: 2016-12-02 Created: 2016-12-02 Last updated: 2016-12-02

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