The rural migration is the emigration of population of the rural areas towards the urban areas. This phenomenon is characteristic of the time of the Industrial revolution, as of the 18th century in Great Britain, the 19th century in many countries in process of industrialization, like the Germany then the France. The rural migration spread with the countries in the process of development in second half of the 20th century century.
The rural migration is related to the increasing Urbanisation of the world population.
Causes of the rural migrationThe world population was, at the beginning, mainly rural. The urbanization developed with the Moyen-Âge with regard to Europe. The day before the Industrial revolution, 90% of the French population lived in rural area.
The rural migration has due:
- increase in the consecutive rural population to the demographic Transition,
- the increase in the agricultural productivity, which decreases the labor necessary: consequently, a rural under-employment very extremely,
- the need for labor growing of the urban areas (domesticity, factories),
- better living conditions downtown.
The Industrial revolution required, to set up itself, of the labor force gathered in only one place, the factory. Previously, rural industry was fundamental, in particular by the means of the make up work (in the textile or the clock industry for example). However, industrialization requires capital and increasingly important infrastructures and the rural industrial employment declines quickly at the 19th century.
Confrontation between the urban ones, paid, eating white bread, profiting one day from weekly rest and the peasants, with the stagnant incomes, badly nourished, was often with the disadvantage of the latter.
The clergy had opposed the rural migration by considering that the Christian lifestyle was preserved better in the traditional agricultural areas. Mgr Louis-Nazaire Bégin founded several newspapers to counter this tendency.
In FranceThe period of maximum rural population (in absolute value) is in France towards 1850. From this moment, the rural population starts to decrease, but with shifts between the areas, according to their richness and the social reports/ratios of production existing.
The rural migration touches in first the zones of low productivity, marginal, driving with a agricultural Déprise. But the fall of population involves the disappearance of the services and the craft industry.
The first to be left are the farm laborers, daily, small farmer. The craftsmen of village, very many at the 19th century, also disappear, victims of the industrialization and the fall of the customers. The reduction in the population involves a fall of the labor available, which pushes the farmers to invest more to make up this deficit. The investments carried out increase the agricultural productivity and decrease by as much the needs for labor.
The very serious agricultural crisis (cereals, Phylloxera) of the years 1880 accelerated the process. The Great War, which made hundreds of thousands of victims among the rural ones, also played a paramount role in the rural migration by confronting the rural young people with townsmen. The rights gradually obtained by the workmen (40 hours week, paid vacations) were also lived like strong injustices by the rural population, which was excluded from it.
The exodus of the young people and the women also leads to the ageing of the population and the problems of celibacy, which cause a drop in birth rate.
The urban population exceeded in France the 50% in 1937.
- Masons creusois with Paris;
- Cooker Nevers-native in Paris;
- Café owners auvergnats in Paris;
- Barcelonette S with the Mexico;
- Breton with Montparnasse;
- Corsica S in Africa and with Marseilles;
- One century (1851-1954) of rural migration in the Sum
Examples of rural migration
- the case of the Massif Central is rather emblematic, because the population decreased early and durably. The village of Saint-Germain-the Herm, for example, in the Livradois has seen its population divided by five between 1850 and today, passing from 2.447 inhabitants in 1846 to 515 today, that is to say an almost continuous fall for 160 years.
In France, the last movement of rural migration started after 1945. This last current contributed to the rural migration of the areas of the West (the Vendée, Anjou, Brittany), which had succeeded in keeping their populations longer, by the combined effect of family structures very framed by the Church, and of a food agriculture very autarkical.
According to INSEE, the rural migration is roughly speaking finished in France in 1975 after the Remembrement of 1965. Since this date, migratory balance countryside/city was stabilized, even since the beginning of the Années 1990 was reversed in the neighborhoods of the great urbanized areas. One speaks now about Rurbanisation: townsmen settle in the countryside, but keep an urban lifestyle, a work downtown. This phenomenon produces a “mitage” of the landscape by a strewn frame, or as well as possible divided into Lotissement S.
After having related to the Western countries primarily, the rural migration extended to the 20th century with the countries from the Tiers-monde.
Movement of the enclosures: cause rural migration in England
- Rural migration in ancient Egypt
- rural French history , volumes 3 (1789-1914) and 4 (1914-1974), under the direction of Georges Duby and A. Wallon, Threshold, 1981.
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