Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Ellen Page-Robin

Second Advisor

Dr. David Chaplin

Third Advisor

Dr. Gerald Markle

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


Except for the highly unusual, women have been historically invisible. Based on the British Census of 1851, this exploratory and descriptive study uses a subsample of all heads of households drawn from a one-percent cluster sample of the population of Greater London. The theoretical model is stratification based on occupation, age, and sex. The occupational skill status of heads of households is examined and compared on the basis of age, sex, and marital status. Findings indicate that the major predictor of occupational skill is marital status, in complex interrelationships with age and sex. Women heads of households, supporting themselves in a mid-Victorian urban patriarchal society, occupied an anomalous position. In terms of occupational skills, married women heads of households had the lowest status; widows' occupational skill status varied by age, with the lowest held by the older subjects; single women consistently occupied the highest position, regardless of age and sex.

Included in

Sociology Commons