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Home > Activities > Committees >Historical Demography (1997-2001) > Seminar Report

Seminar on Changes and Continuity in the American Demographic Behaviours: The Five Centuries' Experience

Córdoba, Argentina, 27-29 October 1998
Organized by the IUSSP Committee on Historical Demography and the university of Córdoba


The Seminar was sponsored by the IUSSP's Committee on Historical Demography and the National university of Córdoba. The Seminar's purpose was to examine the changes and discontinuities of the demographic behaviours in the Americas from a historical perspective. The seven broad issues examined in 37 reports were: Family and Social Changes; Marital Pattern Changes; Epidemic Aspects of Mortality; Illegitimacy; Migration of Europeans to the Americas (19th and 20th Centuries); Children in Historical Demography: Living Arrangements and Child Labour; Spatial Variation of Population on the American Continent. Three round tables complemented the programme: Population and Economy from a Historical Perspective; the Study of Argentinean Historical Demography: Antecedents and Prospects; Changes and Continuity in Demographic terms along Five Centuries of the Americas' History.

The president of the Nations university of Córdoba, Dr. Hugo Juri, welcomed the participants, congratulated the organisers and stressed the importance of studies on historical demography. Dr. José A. Magno de Carvalho, President of the IUSSP, thanked both the individuals and institutions supporting the Seminar and, especially, Dra. Dora Celton, for her great work of organisation and coordination. He also made mention of the IUSSP's general work, it's over 1800 members, and its new work teams and exploratory committees, all of which should contribute to the enhancement of conferences' organisation. Dr. Osamu Saito, Chair of the Committee on Historical Demography (the oldest and most experienced committee) of the IUSSP, underscored the importance of regional conferences within the tight schedule of international seminars. The first regional conference was held in Taiwan in 1996 where participants from other Asian countries (even from Continental China) attended. He also underlined two interesting aspects of the Seminar's programme. First, the demographic behaviours of the region were shaped by historical, economic and cultural patterns that, in turn, received the impact of European patterns, especially those of migration. Second, the programme offered good perspectives for a global vision from various scientific disciplines.

Family and Social Changes

When introducing this first session, Emi de Mesquita took the opportunity to highlight the importance of thinking about families in the Americas in terms of changes and continuities. When it comes to studying the regional family patterns, one faces unexpected realities. After one compares dissimilar regional patterns, there emerge differences as to family organisation and constitution in the Americas.

In the first paper 'Evolution of Family in Buenos Aires in the 17th and 18th Centuries' Susana R. Frías, César A. García Belsunce and Sandra Olivero analysed the said process in the second half of the 17th Century and the first half of the 18th century according to population records. They selected two villages: Costa or Montes Grandes (next to Buenos Aires city) and Magdalena (on the border with La Plata River's coastal Indians). With the former they complement the analysis of the urban structure. Attention is paid to the two periods in which the population records were used and to the specific characteristics of the area. The hypothesis put forward was whether nuclear families prevailed first and whether they gave origin to extended families afterwards. No definite conclusions were attained, which is justified by the static vision provided by the population record, while families are dynamic, ever changing entities. Thus, the hypothesis is partially confirmed: the nuclear families were more numerous along the whole period, a slight decrease being observed in the rural areas. Such decrease was similar to the increase in extended families. In contrast, in the urban area, Buenos Aires, the nuclear families grew largely.

In the paper 'Family and Social Change in Argentina at the End of the Colonial Period and Beginning of Independent Life', María Mónica Ghirardi bases her diagnosis on the findings so far carried out. She systematises other authors' effort to contextualize families attending to the period's legal system and historical spatial, economic and cultural aspects. The author concludes that scholars agree on the non-existence of a single history of the family within a spatial, temporal, national or colonial frame. The papers revised revealed non-uniform behaviours from region to region and between social groups, which reflects a complex society in its composition, where diversity is a constant.

Within the period studied, the Argentine family appears particularly important as an institution, with the father as a specially significant central figure and strong solidarity bonds among relatives, bonds to which the families resort in order to survive - this society favours personal relationships. The transformations derived from the collapse of the colonial order affect the reproductive behaviour of the population.

The paper 'Family, Matrimony and Cohabitation in La Habana in the 19th Century: An Approach through the 1861 Census' was presented by Fernando González Quiñones, Pilar Pérez Fuentes Hernández and Lola Valverde Lamfus. The paper is part of a research work and aims to study the reproductive patterns in the said country taking into account the populations clearly differentiated according to race, social condition and types of economy varying as follows: farm-and-sugar based, tobacco-based, craftsmanship-based and urban-service based. Aspects regarding forms of cohabitation, family group and nuptiality in La Habana (according to the 1861 census) are also presented. The information submitted allows the authors to approach the life of a city barely studied by historical demographers.

Dora Isabel Paiva da Costa's paper 'Living Arrangements and Survival Strategies in Plantations' Formation, Campinas, Sao Paulo 1798-1829' attempts to examine the diversification of living arrangements in connection with the cycles of family development within dynamic economic and social structures. Campinas, formerly constituted mostly by subsistence economies, becomes a sugar cane plantation area. The author shows how occupational groups organise themselves around two types of living arrangements in two distinct periods - living arrangements being the way in which joint family residence and sociability are organised within one household according to the sources and population list drawn upon. The first period is made up of the first years in the formation of Campinas rural life (1798) with small domestic units of small food and sugar producers. The second period (1829) corresponds to second generation families with agricultural units organised around the emerging plantations.

René Salinas, in his work 'Family and Social Differentials in Chile, 19th Century' explains the process of urban peopling since mid 18th century - characterised by a rural-village-modern Chile movement - together with new type of sociability created among the new residents. The author innovates with family life histories though the author departs from traditional sources: list of names of population record or the 1894 census. The domestic units are based on the family chief - mostly adult men. It is telling that widowers reach a high level of legitimation. At other times labour relationships prevail (aggregates, servants and subsidiary members, even with their relatives' inheritances). Their customs would approach the elite groups. Though nuclear families prevail, the local elite incorporates these types of aggregates. There also is a strong presence of single women doing diverse house chores.

In the paper 'Transition of the Argentine Family: 1870-1995' Susana Torrado describes such a transition attending to reproductive behaviour. She tries to determine whether the changes operated are related to the different development patterns adopted in Argentina at that time - those patterns being: agricultural - export model (1870-1930), industrial model substitutive of semi-manufactured and capital goods (1945-1955), model open to international globalisation with relative de-industrialisation and with structural adjustment (1976-1995). The author analyses general fertility (both legitimate and illegitimate) and then explains its evolution through the analysis of differential behaviours. She concludes that the transition of reproductive behaviour in Argentina is one of the most interesting ones due to the precocity and speed of the process, due to the changing nature of the actors involved, due to the resources drawn upon and because the society involved must have been the only one to achieve modernisation of their reproductive behaviour - in opposition to political leaders who remained anchored in the 19th century dogma that 'to rule is to populate', honouring the ecclesiastic hierarchy and failing to perceive that times, actors and circumstances change.

In commenting on this session, Michael Bond considered the reports very rich within the area of Historical Demography. Certain problems of methods, however, arise: Criteria of cohabitation are mixed with kinship criteria. The static sources contrast with historical analyses. Analyses must include an examination of the census itself: how it was carried out and only then, may it be used. Other restrictions connected with the censuses though not mentioned in the session, include the lack of information about family networks in migration times, for example.

The racial is present in all the works; the ethnic factor is complex, depending on the norms. Interracial bonds in general, are socially penalised. This aspect must be worked harder on in the censuses, for it is essential in order to explain the characteristics of Latin-American families.

Changes in Nuptiality Standards

Robert McCaa comments that, in historical studies in the USA and in Western Europe, nuptiality has reached a predominant position in the explanations of large demographic and social changes in the last five centuries. In Latin America, however, nuptiality has been scarcely studied. This fact may be due to the difficulties in studying it (there are no official records of informal and other non-legal unions) the predominant role of mortality (the big plagues continue to draw a lot of attention: mortality is assumed to have an essential role in demographic dynamics) or the idea that there has not been variation in the marital behaviours in the Americas. There are few research works in nuptiality on a long term. Its study, however, may shed some light on transcendental changes of one of the most important landmarks in a person's life.

Eduardo Cavieras, from the Catholic university of Valparaiso, in Chile, in his report 'Chilean Nuptiality: upheaval and Transformations. Valparaiso, 1865-1908. Analysis, Perspectives and Methodological Discussions' attempts to develop estimates of the nuptiality evolution in Valparaiso city. Basically, he discusses the various statistics of the period and reconstructs the nuptiality series that allow us to look at some tendencies.

Agustín Grajales Porras' paper 'Nuptiality in Puebla City's Neighbourhoods at the End of 18th Century' studies behavioural patterns in urban areas. It attempts, also, to situate Puebla within the historiographic production on differential nuptiality, by showing either Puebla's similarity to or its differences from the rest of the regions studied. The work called for a differential analysis of the average age at first wedlock and of definitive celibacy-following Hajnal method according to sex and ethnic origin. In an attempt to better understand Latin-American social dynamics, the analysis was broadened when observing the habitat of the diverse ethnic groups in the urban environment that is to say; the analysis was broadened to the civil jurisdictional and ecclesiastical environment of Puebla City. The sources drawn upon were the general records of the parishes of San Marcos, San Sebastián and La Cruz (1790 and 1791). Among the most relevant findings, the author sets out that the age of marriage of Indian, half-breed and Spanish women-men too, but in a more subtle manner-approaches the Latin-American (and specially the urban) regime. Differences in precocity for marriage entry according to habitat show certain behavioural homogeneity. The more urban the environment the later marriage took place - men always being older than women at the time of the wedding. Celibacy was more frequent among woman (total percentage of unmarried women: 7.6 versus a men's percentage of 6.9).

In the paper 'Marriage and Family Life in Andean Indigenous Communities, 16th to 18th Centuries', Elizabeth Anne Kuznesof presents evidence from three colonial Andean visits, on the importance of precocious marriage of young indigenous women, associated with joint family residence. The remnants of polygamy are also observed in the 1562 visit. The paper presents strong evidence of an expectation and common practice of very early marriage of women (ages 13-15) and the link of this practice to prehispanic Andean pattern. Kuznesof emphasises the important relationship of early marriage and joint family residence to the predominant Andean mode of production. The author concludes that the Andean visits of the 16th and 17th centuries are an invaluable source of demographic data for indigenous families and households as well as insight into the prehispanic Andean culture. The analysis provides evidence of the universal practice of marriage, precocious marriage of women and a substantial recognition of kinship across a broad bilateral range of relationships. The early marriage of women facilitated high birth rates as well as the exchange of adolescents between dispersed households in need of labour.

In the paper 'Cuba (1898-1958). Nuptiality and Fertility in the Beginning of Demographic Modernisation' Abel F. Lozada examines the relatively important changes in the patterns of nuptiality, all of them being directly connected with the social and economic situation of the country. The author found a decrease in the definitive celibacy rate, and an increase, though slight; in the average women's age when marrying (change directly related to a bigger participation in the economic activity). These changes are not produced, however, homogeneously all over the island: the biggest increase occurs in urban areas and in the white population, while in the rural areas and in the coloured population survival of consensual unions was more intense. The large Spanish migratory group arriving in the island in the first thirty years of this century does not seems to have been alien to such changes. Nuptiality, therefore, seems to have played a relevant role in the initial stage of fertility decrease. Thus, the change of nuptiality patterns  - essentially regarding the definitive female celibacy rates - observed in Cuban women between 1899 and 1953, was significant and remains so along time. Fertility decreased in Cuba in the first seventy years of the century in accordance with the process of modernisation.

In the paper 'Marriage Behaviour in Buenos Aires City (1890-1995)', Victoria Mazzeos chooses the said city because it is one of the geographic units that has the oldest data records and has a level of disintegration allowing her to analyse not only intensity and dates of marriages, but also other indicators assumed to be associated. Although the effects of the economic situation seem to have influenced the evolution of nuptiality along all the period under study, the author points out differential characteristics in the marriage behaviour of the population that let her show that Buenos Aires city's nuptiality is different from the ones in the rest of the country.

David Robichaux, in the paper 'Indian Marriage in Mexico since Colonial Time. The Case of a 'Tlaxcalteca' Community' situates in the corresponding context, the cultural factors of the consensual unions, generalised phenomenon in Mexican society at different historical periods. The data show that, since the nineteenth-century liberal reform took place in Mexico, the inhabitants of the community studied have adopted their own nuptial agreements. Frequent free unions as a step previous to civil and religious weddings are ethnographically observed. That situation stems from the loss of power the church exerted over marriages and the incapacity of the state to take over power. Within this context, a series of rituals - undoubtedly old ones, widely spread among various linguistic groups in Mesoamerica - have the function of symbolically marking the beginning of a union acknowledged by the community. Departing from civil and parish records of Acxotla del Monte after the liberal reform, inferences are made that allow detecting high consensual marriage rates within the cultural context or with an analogous ritual marking the beginning of cohabitation, which suggest we are dealing with an informal phenomenon.

In the paper 'Comparative Study of Marriages in Cuba in the 19th Century,' Eduardo San Marful Orbis presents, from a historical-demographic and descriptive perspective, general characteristics of marriage in the period. Though in the 19th century eight censuses were carried out, marriage and widowhood information was recorded only from 1841. Celibacy started to be recorded in 1846, and consensual marriages in 1899, which shows advanced social thought at that time. Among the most relevant findings, the author shows that marriage was more frequent among urban districts than among the rural ones; more frequent among white men than among coloured men (3.1 times as frequent) and more frequent among white women than among coloured women (3.7 times as frequent). The highest number of married men was found in La Habana, probably due to the predominantly male immigration that arrived without wives. The highest number of married white men corresponded with the range of 45 to 54 years of age; coloured men between 35 and 44. The highest number of married white women was observed between the 30 and 34 years of age; coloured women between 25 and 29.

Historical Mortality in the Americas

In the paper 'Studies of Historical Epidemiology: Changes in Mortality as from the use of the Anti-Small-Pox Vaccine de Los Arroyos Village, 1731-1844', Hebe Viglione, Maria E. Astiz and Lia C. García analyse the incidence of small-pox in the population since 1731 (when parish records started in the area) till 1844 (when sacrament certificates of San Nicolas de Bari ceased to record deaths caused by small-pox). In such a prologued period of time the following facts were observed: the impact produced by small-pox, the decrease in mortality when the vaccine was used systematically, the new outbreak of the disease during the independence and civil wars, and its slow ebb between 1830 and 1840. De Los Arroyos and San Nicolas de Bari Villages spatially coincide with the accesses through Buenos Aires port to Córdoba and Santa Fe, and through Córdoba and Santa Fe to the rest of the territory - including Chile, Perú, Paraguay and Brazil. The documents compared revealed how epidemics spread in these and other directions.

Mario Boleda in his paper 'Demographic Dynamics in the Colonial Central and Southern Andes; Essay on New Comparisons' presents demographic estimates on native Indians from Bolivia, north of Argentina and north of Chile in the last fourth of the 18th century. Boleda uses eight lists of names collected in the central-southern Andean region at dates relatively close to each other. It is not easy to assign a precise date since reference dates (habitual in contemporary censuses) do not exist in those cases. Life expectancy is evaluated between 26 and 28 years of age (compared with life expectancy in the European population at that time: between 25 and 27 i.e. 10 years higher). Those figures show a demographic dynamic in an absolute pre-transitional phase.

In her paper 'Disease and Mortality Crisis in Córdoba, Argentina, between the 16th and 20th Centuries', Dora Celton examines the evolution of the principal mortality crisis in the region studied according to sources from both the proto-statistical and the statistical periods. The different characteristics of the ethnic groups involved and the range and intensity of the crisis allow two periods to be distinguished. The period of the plagues goes from the foundation of the city till mid 18th century. High mortality rates were frequent and almost normal. The economy was regional and very restricted and survival was considered a divine gift granted as an answer to profuse prayers said to the city's patron saints. Famines caused many mortality crises. The second period is that of controlled mortality and goes from the end of the previous period to our century. That is the modern time when epidemic's frequency decreases but their virulence does not (for example small-pox and cholera). This period whose beginning coincides with the economic recovery of Córdoba in the first decades of the 19th century - faces a deterioration of sanitary and food conditions due to the war of independence, first, and the civil wars, afterwards.

In 'The Historical Process of Changes in Mortality in Cuba. Circumstances and Impacts' Rolando García Quiñones examines the historical evolution of Cuban populations' mortality, with an emphasis on the analysis of epidemic profile transformations and the circumstances of impacts. Among his main queries the author attempts to answer such questions as: What factors, mechanisms and characteristics are involved in this process? What convergences and discrepancies are there with respect to the theories of transition and the countries that have completed or initiated them later on? Among the most significant findings, the author shows why Cuba already presented 'moderate mortality rates' when the revolution took place. That country has now achieved mortality rates and health levels similar to those of developed countries. Cuba may have achieved similar indicators under the circumstances previous to the revolution, because Cuba's demographic transition was already relatively advanced. The most telling datum is, however, the great territorial homogeneity and social strata's homogeneity as regards mortality rates since the revolution - homogeneity that had no precedents in the demographic history of the country.


Hector Pérez Brignoli points out that illegitimacy is a very important phenomenon in Latin America - more than in Europe. Illegitimacy is measured with percentages of illegitimate births, of spouses' origin and sometimes, of deaths. The data say little. What are their demographic meaning? Differential mortality for either legitimate or illegitimate children is unlikely to be verified. Differential fertility might be more likely to be confirmed. Pre-transitional fertility was higher in Latin America than in Europe, which is associated with illegitimacy. Illegitimacy tends to be higher in urban areas, always seems to be higher among mestizos and castes than among Spaniards or Indians, and it seems to correlate to socio-racial mixture.

The paper presented by Norma Angélixa Castillo Palma (Autonomous Metropolitan university of Istapalaga in México) 'Marriage Patterns and Mestization in Cholula (1674-1796)' presents the tendencies of endogamy and exogamy according to sexual and socio-racial groups along percentages taken at three periods: 1674-1691; 1692-1722; 1753-1796. Such periods correspond to the complete emptying of both the marriage books of Spaniards and 'people reason' in the parish of San Pedro Cholula from 1674 to 1687 and from 1754 to 1796. It also presented a sample of the Indians from neighbourhoods next to the city and from the towns under the jurisdiction of the above-mentioned parish. The sample aims to confirm the traditional endogamy pattern and to estimate the average age at marriage. This work does confirm endogamy practices among Indians from both neighbourhoods and town.

The text presented by Sonia E. Colantonio (from the Chair of Anthropology in the National university of Córdoba) entitled 'Evolution of Filiation Patterns in a Rural Area in Cordoba Province' looks into the illegitimacy patterns in marriages solemnised in the parish of Pocho (Traslasierra, Córdoba Province) at two periods (1766-1802; 1810-1842). The first period is characterised by a closed class society. The second coincides with the revolutionary independence process and civil war process in which social and ecclesiastical rules change as regards both mestization and illegitimacy.

The paper 'Illegitimacy in the City and the Country in Córdoba, End of 18th Century' was presented by María del Carmen Ferreyra (National university of Córdoba) who tries to determine illegitimacy among whites, free-people and slaves in both city and country between 1760 and 1790. Illegitimacy rates are found to be lower - both for Spaniards and free people - in the rural than in the urban area. Slaves' illegitimacy rates were higher in the country than in the city.

Lilian Illades (Autonomous university of Puebla) in her paper 'Foundlings and Illegitimate Children in Puebla de los Angeles in the 18th Century: Ethnic and Residence Differences', analyses the revision of 28,721 baptism entries of new-born babies - three fourths of the entries belong to the Parish of Sagrario Angelopolitano and the rest to the Parish of Santo Angel. The author describes each book where baptism were recorded.

The report presented by Renato Pinto Venancio (Federal university of Ouro Preto) entitled 'Illegitimacy and Family life in Rio de Janeiro: 1750-1800', examines the second half of the 18th century and draws upon parish records' data. He analyses a marginal illegitimate sub-society in colonial Brazil.

European Migrations toward the Americas, 19th and 20th centuries

Sergio Odilon Nadalin (National university of Paraná, Brazil) presented the text entitled 'Construction of an Immigrant Culture: Demographic Behaviour in a German-origin Parish in Curitiba, 19th and 20th Centuries' the author deals with two closely commented topics: on the one hand the dynamic of cultural conduct and the construction of ethnic identity, and, on the other hand, attitudes in the procreation phase and its obvious articulations with fertility.

The first topic examines an issue closely linked to the processes of adaptation and integration to the host society by immigrants and their descendants. The second topic examines the family history and ethnic community.

Hervé Domenach (university of Provence, France) presented 'The Evolution of the Immigration Process in the 20th Century'. The author outlines the evolution of the migrants in Cuenca del Caribe, taking into account a series of economic and social factors unfavourable to population stability.

Fernando J. Devoto (university of Buenos Aires) presented his research work 'Information Chains and Networks. The Role of Strong and Weak Ties in the Migratory Movement of Spaniards and Italians to Argentina'. The economic factors of the decision to emigrate are analysed; emphasis being made on the coexistence of strong and weak ties in the visa of access to jobs. Labour mobility can only be explained through weak bonds: numerous bridges with Argentinean society were built by Italians and Spaniards via institutions, fellow peasants, fellow citizens and friends of friends. All this reminds us of the importance of the context as to the microsocial mechanism lying at the core of migratory experience.

Maria Luisa Andreazza (Federal university of Paraná, Brazil), in her text 'Marriage and Reproduction Demographic Behaviours of ukrainians in Brazil', interrelates cultural tradition, migration and demographic behaviour of this group in South Paraná. Besides, she analyses from a diachronic perspective, the demographic profile of the group and explains its dynamic of nuptiality and fertility (1895 and 1995).

Sandro Ferrari (university of Campinas, Brazil), in his 'The Emergence of New Cities in the OEA West Side of Sao Paulo', studies the creation of such urban centres where former coffee producing estates had existed and had fragmented into small properties and plots (afterwards occupied mainly by European immigrants or their descendants). Those colonial groups can stand for the origin of many present municipal communities.

The report 'Pioneers and Entrepreneurs: Agricultural and Industrial Activities Developed by German Immigrants in Limeira and Americana (1850-1930)' was presented by Adriana Pessatte Azzolino, María José F. de Ribeiro and Wilson Jose Caritá (university of Campinas, Brazil). The paper describes the social insertion of German immigrants through three case studies. It aims to rescue the background of two groups: pioneers (arriving in Brazil in 1852 who found a destination in an agricultural colonial nucleus in Limeira) and entrepreneurs (Family managed companies in Americana and Limeira).

Children in Demographic History: Living Arrangements and Child Labour

Esmeralda Blanco Bolsonaro de Moura (university of Sao Paulo) presented her text 'Boys and Girls in the Street: Impasse and Dissonance in Building Childhood and Adolescent Identity in the Old RePUBLIC'. The period analysed is particularly important in the history of Sao Paulo city in its transition to the 20th century the papers examines the experience of children and adolescents belonging to economically disadvantaged social classes in Brazilian society.

The paper 'Child Labour in urban Context in Buenos Aires, Argentina (early 20th century)' was presented by Adrian Carbonetti and Maria E. Rustán (National university of Córdoba). The authors look into two cities with dissimilar economic and social realities.

The report 'Plowing the Fields, Serving the Homes. Child Labour in Traditional Chile', presented by Igor Goicovic Donoso (university of Chile) aims to acknowledge the magnitude of child labour in Chilean society departing from the 1854 census records from Mincha Parish, Illapel Department. Those records offer particularly important data on child labour and allow answers to a series of queries among which two of the most important are: What was the magnitude of child labour within the general labour force at that time? and what kind of job did children do? Departing from testamentary sources, the mechanisms of those children's social integration and the compensation they were given were also studied.

Spatial Variation of American Populations

María del Carmen Baigorria (National university of Córdoba, Argentina) presented the paper 'Spatial Population Distribution in Argentina and Chile (1865 to 1895)' and provided an analysis aimed at interpreting the production changes arising in mid and late 19th century. She also explained the associated demographic, occupational and social mutations.

Ana Amelia Camarano and Kaizo Iwakami Beltrao university of Sao Paulo reported on 'The Spatial Distribution of Brazilian Population: Changes in the Second Half of the 20th Century'.

The period studied ranges from 1940 to 1996. The process of spatial occupation is characterised by a de-ruralization and an urban population concentration. Migratory movements are the main component in this process, for the vegetative growth is higher in emigration areas.

The paper 'Changes and Continuities in the Occupation of Central Andean Oasis (Argentina 1895/1947)', was presented by Ana T. Fanchin, María Clotilde Gonzales Marín, Patricia Noemí Sánchez, María Concepción Navas, José Ernesto Torres y Lydia Gómez (Institute of Applied Geography: FFHA-uNSJ, National university of San Juan, Argentina). A new analytical approach enables us to further adjust demographic indicators. Besides the analytical strategies were also presented, together with the cartography produced, statistical evidence and the foundations of the spatial occupational process in the first half of the 20th century, with particular focus on urban and rural uses.

The riposte 'Argentina and uruguay at the Dawn of the 20th Century. Domestic Heterogeneities and International Homogeneities. Demographic Contributions to be Interpreted', was presented by Raquel Gil Montero, Gladys Massé, Raquel Pollero and Ana Teruel (universities of Buenos Aires and Jujuy, Argentina, and university of the uruguayan RePUBLIC). It mainly attends to the demographic situation in both countries and departs from censuses. The demographic description produced allows outlining heterogeneous and homogeneous behaviours transcending the territorial spaces structured according to legal-political boundaries (known in Argentina as provinces and in uruguay as departments).

Rolando García Quiñones

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