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Unequal lands : Soil type, nutrition, and child mortality in southern Sweden, 1850-1914

Hedefalk, Finn LU ; Quaranta, Luciana LU and Bengtsson, Tommy LU (2017) In Demographic Research 36. p.1039-1080
Abstract (Swedish)
Background: Child mortality differed greatly within rural regions in Europe before and during the mortality transition. Little is known about the role of nutrition in such geographic differences, and about the factors affecting the nutritional status and hence the disease outcomes.

Objective: Focusing on nutrition, we analyse the effects of soil type, used as an indicator of the farm-level agricultural productivity and hence of nutritional status, on mortality of children aged 1–15 living in five rural parishes in southern Sweden, 1850–1914.

Methods: Using longitudinal demographic data combined with unique geographic microdata on residential histories, the effect of soil type on mortality risks are analysed considering as... (More)
Background: Child mortality differed greatly within rural regions in Europe before and during the mortality transition. Little is known about the role of nutrition in such geographic differences, and about the factors affecting the nutritional status and hence the disease outcomes.

Objective: Focusing on nutrition, we analyse the effects of soil type, used as an indicator of the farm-level agricultural productivity and hence of nutritional status, on mortality of children aged 1–15 living in five rural parishes in southern Sweden, 1850–1914.

Methods: Using longitudinal demographic data combined with unique geographic microdata on residential histories, the effect of soil type on mortality risks are analysed considering as outcome all-cause mortality and mortality from nonairborne and airborne infectious diseases.

Results: Soil type primarily affected the mortality of farmers’ children, but not labourers’ children. Particularly, farmers’ children residing in areas with very high proportions of clayey till (75–100% coverage) experienced lower risks of dying compared to children residing in areas with other soil types such as clay and sandy soils.

Conclusions: Certain soil types seem to have influenced agricultural productivity, which in turn affected the nutrition of farmers’ children and thus their likelihood of dying. The results indicate the relatively important role of nutrition as a mortality predictor for these children.

Contribution: As, to our knowledge, the first longitudinal study at the microlevel that analyses the effects of soil type on mortality in a historical rural society, we contribute to the literature on the role of nutrition on the risk of dying in a preindustrial society. (Less)
Abstract
Background: Child mortality differed greatly within rural regions in Europe before and during the mortality transition. Little is known about the role of nutrition in such geographic differences, and about the factors affecting the nutritional status and hence the disease outcomes.

Objective: Focusing on nutrition, we analyse the effects of soil type, used as an indicator of the farm-level agricultural productivity and hence of nutritional status, on mortality of children aged 1–15 living in five rural parishes in southern Sweden, 1850–1914.

Methods: Using longitudinal demographic data combined with unique geographic microdata on residential histories, the effect of soil type on mortality risks are analysed considering as... (More)
Background: Child mortality differed greatly within rural regions in Europe before and during the mortality transition. Little is known about the role of nutrition in such geographic differences, and about the factors affecting the nutritional status and hence the disease outcomes.

Objective: Focusing on nutrition, we analyse the effects of soil type, used as an indicator of the farm-level agricultural productivity and hence of nutritional status, on mortality of children aged 1–15 living in five rural parishes in southern Sweden, 1850–1914.

Methods: Using longitudinal demographic data combined with unique geographic microdata on residential histories, the effect of soil type on mortality risks are analysed considering as outcome all-cause mortality and mortality from nonairborne and airborne infectious diseases.

Results: Soil type primarily affected the mortality of farmers’ children, but not labourers’ children. Particularly, farmers’ children residing in areas with very high proportions of clayey till (75–100% coverage) experienced lower risks of dying compared to children residing in areas with other soil types such as clay and sandy soils.

Conclusions: Certain soil types seem to have influenced agricultural productivity, which in turn affected the nutrition of farmers’ children and thus their likelihood of dying. The results indicate the relatively important role of nutrition as a mortality predictor for these children.

Contribution: As, to our knowledge, the first longitudinal study at the microlevel that analyses the effects of soil type on mortality in a historical rural society, we contribute to the literature on the role of nutrition on the risk of dying in a preindustrial society. (Less)
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author
organization
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type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
agricultural production systems, child mortality, geographic microdata, nutrition, Sweden, agricultural production systems, child mortality, geographic microdata, nutrition, Sweden
in
Demographic Research
volume
36
pages
42 pages
publisher
Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research
external identifiers
  • scopus:85018192822
ISSN
1435-9871
DOI
10.4054/DemRes.2017.36.36
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
13eb86e5-6e3c-4986-92c9-24e1578d5ee4
date added to LUP
2017-04-04 14:39:56
date last changed
2018-01-07 11:57:55
@article{13eb86e5-6e3c-4986-92c9-24e1578d5ee4,
  abstract     = {Background: Child mortality differed greatly within rural regions in Europe before and during the mortality transition. Little is known about the role of nutrition in such geographic differences, and about the factors affecting the nutritional status and hence the disease outcomes.<br/><br/>Objective: Focusing on nutrition, we analyse the effects of soil type, used as an indicator of the farm-level agricultural productivity and hence of nutritional status, on mortality of children aged 1–15 living in five rural parishes in southern Sweden, 1850–1914.<br/><br/>Methods: Using longitudinal demographic data combined with unique geographic microdata on residential histories, the effect of soil type on mortality risks are analysed considering as outcome all-cause mortality and mortality from nonairborne and airborne infectious diseases.<br/><br/>Results: Soil type primarily affected the mortality of farmers’ children, but not labourers’ children. Particularly, farmers’ children residing in areas with very high proportions of clayey till (75–100% coverage) experienced lower risks of dying compared to children residing in areas with other soil types such as clay and sandy soils.<br/><br/>Conclusions: Certain soil types seem to have influenced agricultural productivity, which in turn affected the nutrition of farmers’ children and thus their likelihood of dying. The results indicate the relatively important role of nutrition as a mortality predictor for these children.<br/><br/>Contribution: As, to our knowledge, the first longitudinal study at the microlevel that analyses the effects of soil type on mortality in a historical rural society, we contribute to the literature on the role of nutrition on the risk of dying in a preindustrial society.},
  articleno    = {36},
  author       = {Hedefalk, Finn and Quaranta, Luciana and Bengtsson, Tommy},
  issn         = {1435-9871},
  keyword      = {agricultural production systems,child mortality,geographic microdata,nutrition,Sweden,agricultural production systems,child mortality,geographic microdata,nutrition,Sweden },
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {04},
  pages        = {1039--1080},
  publisher    = {Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research},
  series       = {Demographic Research},
  title        = {Unequal lands : Soil type, nutrition, and child mortality in southern Sweden, 1850-1914},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.4054/DemRes.2017.36.36},
  volume       = {36},
  year         = {2017},
}