CfP "Los mundos del aprendizaje de los oficios, siglos XVI-XIX”/"The world of apprenticeship in skill labour system, 16th-19th c."

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CFP Dossier "The world of apprenticeship in skill labour system, 16th-19th centuries"

Sonia Pérez Toledo (coord.)

MILLARS. ESPAI I HISTÒRIA (Universitat Jaume I, Spain)

Deadline for sending texts: December 10, 2021

Publication date: June 2022


For a long period, in Western Europe as well as in Latin America, the teaching of craft trades in workshops located in urban places and workshops (or their equivalents established in rural areas) was mainly in the hands of craft teachers. With the exception of domestic work and in a certain way also homework, as well as in most rural areas, the central figure for the reproduction of labour was the master craftsman of the small workshop who in an important proportion in some cities formed part of the guilds or corporations of the trades. As we know, the concerts or apprenticeship contracts constituted the legal instrument by means of which children and young people were handed over to teacher owners of workshops and also to the owners or administrators of productive establishments in order for them to learn a skill labour.

The legal basis established in the ordinances and the notarial contracts were two of the links that the unionized artisans maintained with the power and, at the same time, the ordinances and concerts constituted fundamental elements that formalized the reproduction of the trades or manual arts at the same time that clearly defined the hierarchical structure of the social organization of the artisan. On the other hand, the practices of “handing over” children and young people to learn a trade was frequently a form of control and access of the workforce within the union or even without the existence of a proper corporate structure, so the Learning the trades (as well as control over the labour force) was not always carried out prior to the formalization of a written contract before a notary, since very often the boys and girls learned the trade in the domestic unit, which may or may not be a fit workshop.

Hence, it is highly probable that many other children and young people were delivered to learn a trade in a workshop without mediating a written contract, but with a verbal agreement between the parties, a verbal agreement, a practice that over time remained established by "custom". In short, formalized or not, the learning of the trades was verified in artisan workshops and in productive establishments that were in charge of a teacher, a practice that was part of the long-standing traditional and customary sociability of artisans, practices that were located precisely in the terrain of custom and that contributed to give it legitimacy, beyond the modernity established by the freedom of office and during a good part of the 19th century, a period in which with greater or less success both Western Europe as well as America It was sought to promote training for work through the establishment of schools of arts and crafts, very often relying on foreign migration.

How were these processes experienced in different latitudes? This is what constitutes the central axis of reflection and analysis of the Dossier proposed to be published in Millars. Espai i Història, a magazine edited by the Universitat Jaume I de Castellón (Spain) and to which I would like to invite you to collaborate with a work that can address these problems with local or regional approaches, focusing its attention on one or more trades or on the study of changes in the forms of learning or the emergence of "modern" projects or institutions, or reflecting on the discourses and ideas directly related to these processes.

Millars journal publishes original texts in Spanish, English, French, Italian, Portuguese and Catalan that are submitted to a double blinded peer-review that will serve to decide their final publication. The final text for the Dossier must be sent to Sonia Pérez Toledo ( no later than the first week of December 2021, the issue will be published in 2022.

Indicate that the proposed texts must strictly follow the Millars drafting standards that you can find at: