Industrialization, urbanization and biological welfare in Catalonia, 1840-1935: an anthropometric approach

Authors

  • Josep Maria Ramon-Muñoz Universidad de Murcia

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.1344/rhi.v20i46.20802

Keywords:

Biological welfare, Human Height, Industrialization, Urban Penalty, Catalonia

Abstract

This article analyses the evolution of the biological standard of living in Catalonia between the mid- nineteenth and the early twentieth centuries. By comparing average height data for three industrial cities and five rural towns, it explores the potential impact of industrialization and urbanization on the standard of living in a region that led the process of economic modernization and structural change in Spain. The results of such a comparison show that average height data declined two centimetres between 1840 and 1870 male cohorts. Height fell both in industrial cities and in rural towns. The data do not clearly establish the existence of urban penalty, but suggests, instead, the existence of a nutritional crisis and the deterioration of biological welfare in the early phases of Catalan industrialization.

Published

2017-12-21

Issue

Section

Articles