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The rise of the middle class : The income gap between salaried employees and workers in Sweden, 1830–1935

Bengtsson, Erik LU and Prado, Svante (2018) In Lund Papers in Economic History. General Issues
Abstract
We present the first comprehensive, long run salary information on Swedish middle-class employees before the twentieth century. Our data include school teachers, professors, clerks, policemen and janitors in Stockholm 1830–1935. We use the new data to compare the annual earnings of these middle-class employees with the annual earnings of farm workers and manufacturing workers. The results show that the income gap between the middle class and the working class widen drastically from the mid-nineteenth century to a historically high level during the 1880s and 1890s. The differentials then decreased during the first four decades of the twentieth century. The bulging earnings advantage of middle-class employees vis-à-vis unskilled workers... (More)
We present the first comprehensive, long run salary information on Swedish middle-class employees before the twentieth century. Our data include school teachers, professors, clerks, policemen and janitors in Stockholm 1830–1935. We use the new data to compare the annual earnings of these middle-class employees with the annual earnings of farm workers and manufacturing workers. The results show that the income gap between the middle class and the working class widen drastically from the mid-nineteenth century to a historically high level during the 1880s and 1890s. The differentials then decreased during the first four decades of the twentieth century. The bulging earnings advantage of middle-class employees vis-à-vis unskilled workers chimes with Kocka’s depiction of the latter half of the nineteenth century as the era of the bourgeoisie. (Less)
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author
and
organization
publishing date
type
Working paper
publication status
published
subject
keywords
wages, salaries, income inequality, middle class, Sweden, J31, N13, N33
in
Lund Papers in Economic History. General Issues
issue
2018:186
pages
28 pages
external identifiers
  • scopus:85040231583
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
a7e9a738-ed00-4ef4-9d0c-4724d39b98df
date added to LUP
2019-01-07 15:45:37
date last changed
2020-09-30 05:54:34
@misc{a7e9a738-ed00-4ef4-9d0c-4724d39b98df,
  abstract     = {We present the first comprehensive, long run salary information on Swedish middle-class employees before the twentieth century. Our data include school teachers, professors, clerks, policemen and janitors in Stockholm 1830–1935. We use the new data to compare the annual earnings of these middle-class employees with the annual earnings of farm workers and manufacturing workers. The results show that the income gap between the middle class and the working class widen drastically from the mid-nineteenth century to a historically high level during the 1880s and 1890s. The differentials then decreased during the first four decades of the twentieth century. The bulging earnings advantage of middle-class employees vis-à-vis unskilled workers chimes with Kocka’s depiction of the latter half of the nineteenth century as the era of the bourgeoisie.},
  author       = {Bengtsson, Erik and Prado, Svante},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Working Paper},
  number       = {2018:186},
  series       = {Lund Papers in Economic History. General Issues},
  title        = {The rise of the middle class : The income gap between salaried employees and workers in Sweden, 1830–1935},
  url          = {https://lup.lub.lu.se/search/ws/files/56570497/LUPEH_186.pdf},
  year         = {2018},
}