La “Doña” è Mobile: The Role of Women in Social Mobility in a Pre-Modern Economy
We use data from marriage records in Murcia, Spain, in the eighteenth century to study the role of women in social mobility in the pre-modern era. Our measure of social standing is identification as a don or doña, an honorific denoting high, though not necessarily noble, status. We show that this measure, which is acquired over the lifecycle, shows gendered transmission patterns. In particular, same-sex transmission is stronger than opposite-sex, for both sons and daughters. The relative transmission from fathers versus mothers varies over the lifecycle, and grandparents may affect the status of their grandchildren.