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A Review on the Records of the Family Head’s Accidents in the Family Register during the Late Joseon Dynasty - Related to the Issue of the Family Head Succession -

KyungRan Kim 1

1고려대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

Since the identification of households on the family register was conducted focusing on the family head who was the representative of the family, a family head was replaced in order to avoid the discontinuity of the household in case the head couldn’t act as a family head due to an accident. Based on 『the family registers of Danseong-hyeon, Gyeongsang-do』, this study examined the records of family head-related accidents on the family registers and the reflected issues of family head succession. The reasons for family head-related accidents appeared in the family registers of Danseong-hyeon were mainly classified as death, flight, move, separation, introduction of master, leaving home to become a Buddhist monk, and the reasons were recorded with two tendencies. First, the qualification of a family head was ‘a grown-up man.’ This was stipulated in the law related to the family register regulations and once again confirmed by the type of a family head succession shown in the family head-related accidents on the family registers. Second, the purpose of accident records were not limited to a simple listing of an accident. In other words, a family head-related accidents were recorded with intentions to maintain and secure a household. In this regard, it appears that the records of the family head-related accidents were differently characterized depending on the period. In the 17th century, the accidents were recorded only when a family head died and the majority of households whose family head accidents were recorded belonged to the upper class. However, the purpose and characteristics of the family head-related accident records changed after the early 18th century. The type of the family head-related accident records diversified and the recording was spread to the middle and lower classes. The reason for such changes was in relation to the nation's intention to select a male as a family head in order to easily impose taxes, and on the other hand, it was a result of the application of policies aimed at maintaining and securing the number of households and their family members after the early 18th century. In this process, it is considered that the purpose and characteristics of the family head-related accident records became different from those of the 17th century.

Citation status

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