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Title: Social networks, families and neighbourhoods : Brancepeth Parish in the seventeenth century
Author: Hamilton, Dorothy Elizabeth
ISNI:       0000 0004 2722 3044
Awarding Body: Durham University
Current Institution: Durham University
Date of Award: 2000
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Brancepeth parish is situated in County Durham in the north of England. In the seventeenth century the parish contained seven townships. This study questions the Idea of the parish as a single social community by examining social networks between families living within the different townships of the parish. The study is based on a Family Reconstitution which was undertaken in order to reconstruct the life-cycles of family groups who lived in the farms and villages of Brancepeth parish in the seventeenth century. Wills, inventories, land records, the Hearth Tax and a church seating plan have been used to assess the kinds of families represented by the Family Reconstitution in Brancepeth. The scale and structure of social interactions between families have been investigated using Ucinet social network analysis software. The networks analysed were based on witnessing wills, appraising inventories, loans of money made on trust, kinship and surnames. The results clearly point to the existence of a number of social communities within the parish population, the importance of neighbours, and the presence of kin within the neighbourhood. The findings of this study are discussed in the context of the economic structure of the parish, the influence of recusancy, and the history and culture of the population. The study concludes that Brancepeth parish in the seventeenth century had many of the features of a traditional medieval society, in an early modern world.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available