Statuses on the Move

Part of the Palgrave Macmillan Studies in Family and Intimate Life book series (PSFL)


In the twentieth century, professionalization led to an increasing convergence of status hierarchies. Learned professionals retained their high status, but family background still made a difference. Descendants of noble and old clerical families were the first to crowd into learned professions. The 1960s marked a turning point as descendants of worker families enrolled at university in increasing numbers. However, once descendants of lower-ranking families had achieved this higher status, their descendants tended to retain it. Marriages were even more prone to status equivalence. Generally, the marriage market stretched no more than one or two notches higher up or lower down in rank. The parliamentary reform paved the way for lower-ranking people to upgrade at one bound to the highest rank in 1907, but today the majority of MPs in Finland are learned professionals.


Nineteenth Century Paper Mill Department Head Marriage Market Assistant Nurse 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of HelsinkiHelsinkiFinland

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