Unwed motherhood in 18th– and 19th-century history.
Contextualizing pauper and female agency.
CFP for a panel at the European Social Science History Conference, Belfast, 4-7 April, 2018
Organisers: Griet Vermeesch (VUB-Free University of Brussels) and Ariadne Schmidt (Leiden University)
This session deals with the ‘pauper agency’ and ‘gender agency’ of single mothers as a particular lower social group whose experiences, prospects and constrains were decisively shaped by the changing economic, political and social contexts of the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. In that period, illegitimacy rates dramatically rose from 1 or 2 percent in 1750 to 5 per cent around 1800 to levels of 10 and 20 percent by the mid-nineteenth century. These rising rates and the associated economic, political and social fields of tension link up with profound transformations in European history as a whole, and have for good reason unceasingly captivated historians ever since the 1970’s. Continue reading “CfP: Unwed motherhood in 18th- and 19th-century history”