The employment structure of Irkutsk population in the second half of the 19 th and early 20 centuries: dynamics of social differentiation processes and class formation

Volume 3, Number 2, 2018, P. 110–117


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The article considers the major characteristics of the employment structure of Irkutsk population in the second half of the 19th and early 20th century, reveals their relationship with the city’s economic development in the context of capitalist modernization. It places special emphasis on the importance of Irkutsk as an organizing centre of regional market and provides the statistical data of the increase in the number of commercial premises in the city, the growth of trade turnover in Irkutsk in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The quantitative indicators of the city’s craft and industrial enterprises are discussed, and figures are presented regarding the proportion of manual and automated labor used on them. The article proves that the specifics of the city’s economic development determined the peculiarities of the employment structure of the population of Irkutsk. The analysis of its main indicators was carried out on the basis of the materials of the first All-Russian population census of 1897. The available data made it possible to reveal an increase in the discrepancy between the social class composition of Irkutsk population and its inhabitants’ employment structure. The author proves that the development of bourgeois relations blurred the classes’ boundaries and formed the structure of classes and some professional groups. It was stressed that this process was most active among the peasant population of Irkutsk. The special features of the employment structure of Irkutsk population are, on the one hand, an insignificant share of people employed in the sphere of industrial production, and on the other hand, a high proportion of people employed in the administrative-and-managerial, construction, education, enlightenment and culture spheres. Gender peculiarities of the employment structure of Irkutsk population are shown. The processes of class formation of the city bourgeoisie are analyzed; the main sources of its formation, spheres of economic activity of Irkutsk bourgeoisie are examined.


capitalist modernization, Irkutsk, employment structure of the population, economic development of the city, merchant class, bourgeoisie, social differentiation, processes of class formation


Natalya I. Gavrilova, Candidate of Historical Sciences, Associate Professor of Sociology and Psychology Department, Irkutsk National Research Technical University, Irkutsk, Russia

For citation:

Gavrilova N.I. The employment structure of Irkutsk population in the second half of the 19th and early 20th centuries: dynamics of social differentiation processes and class formation. Social Competence, 2018, vol. 3, no. 2, pp. 110–117. (In Russian).


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