University of Hertfordshire

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages17
JournalHistory of Retailing and Consumption
Early online date16 May 2017
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 16 May 2017


The evolution of retail trade in European cities during the first decades of the twentieth century can be a powerful indicator about their urban and social dynamics. The growth in the number of shops, the spatial rearrangement of their distribution, and the increased social and political relevance of shopkeepers are features commonly highlighted by the historiography. But this picture is better known for Central and Northern European cities. As for the Iberian Peninsula although some efforts can be mentioned, there are still progress to be made. The papers discussed in this introductory essay address those questions through a double perspective: first, an analysis of the urban space and its impact on the development of the retail trade's spatial distribution and evolution; second, a historical and comparative analysis of four
Iberian cities trying to build a better picture about the spatial, social and economic relevance of their retail trade. These perspectives will be explored for the cities of La Coruña, Barcelona, Bilbao and Lisbon studying the retail trade spatial distribution and the introduction of new forms of commercial concentration and consumption, roughly between 1840 and 1940


This is an Accepted Manuscript version of an article published by Taylor & Francis on 16 May 2017, available online at:

ID: 11687050