Franca-São Paulo/Brasil, século XIX


The aim of this study was to broaden the study of mixed marriages, as at present, there are few studies in Brazilian historiography regarding this issue. This analysis focuses on marriages between people of different social strata: free people and slaves or free people and descendants of enslaved African persons. Through the study of parish wedding records (1806-1887), a nominative list of inhabitants (1836) and post-mortem inventories from Franca (São Paulo, Brazil), we found more free women than men formed mixed families; legitimate marriage proved to be a strategy to ensure social status, the reproduction of family models recommended by Church and State and respect of the local elite, recognition of offspring and transfer of goods. Mixed families allow us to further understand the dynamic and complex process of family formation and composition, miscegenation and intimate relations between free people, freed people and slaves.

Mixed marriages; Free population; Slave population; Nineteenth century

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