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Magallania (Punta Arenas)

On-line version ISSN 0718-2244

Abstract

LLORCA-JANA, Manuel; ROBLES ORTIZ, Claudio  and  NAVARRETE-MONTALVO, Juan. Chiloé, an egalitarian rural society. Agricultural income and land distribution after independence. Magallania [online]. 2018, vol.46, n.2, pp.85-105. ISSN 0718-2244.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0718-22442018000200085.

This article assesses both agricultural income distribution and land distribution in Chiloé during the 1830s-1850s, comparing both variables with the rest of the Chilean provinces at that time, in a rather unexplored period in Chile’s agrarian historiography. We have used several untapped sources such as the Catastro (agricultural census). From this source, we have built and processed an over half a million records database for the first three agricultural censuses of 1832, 1837 and 1852. Our results show a very egalitarian distribution of both agricultural income and land in Chiloé c.1830-1855, an exceptionality within Chile. This uniqueness of Chiloé is mainly explained by policies applied from late colonial times, in particular the granting of land to creole and indigenous people, as well as by a process of land partition soon after independence, being both processes unique to Chile.

Keywords : Chiloé; catastro; inequality; land distribution; Chile; nineteenth century.

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