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Vidya, Veda, and Varna: The Influence of Religion and Caste on Education in Rural India

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  • Vani K. Borooah

    ()

  • Sriya Iyer

    ()

Abstract

This paper argues that Vidya (education), Veda (religion) and Varna (caste) are inter-linked in India. It examines whether, and to what extent, the enrolment of children at school in India is influenced by community norms such those of religion (Hindu or Muslim) or caste (Scheduled or non-Scheduled). The econometric estimates are based on unit record data from a survey of 33,000 rural households, in 1,765 villages, from 16 states of India. The equation for the likelihood of being enrolled at school is estimated separately for boys and for girls and, in each of the equations, all of the slope coefficients are allowed to differ according as to whether the children are Hindu, Muslim or Scheduled Caste. The main findings are that the size of the religion or caste effect depends on the non-community circumstances in which the children are placed. Under favourable circumstances (for example, when parents are literate), the size of the community effect is negligible. Under less favourable circumstances, the size of the community effect is considerable.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by ICER - International Centre for Economic Research in its series ICER Working Papers with number 32-2002.

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Length: 61 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:icr:wpicer:32-2002

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Keywords: Religion; Caste; School enrolment; India; Logit models;

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References

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  1. Gibson, John, 2001. "Literacy and Intrahousehold Externalities," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 155-166, January.
  2. Vani Borooah, 2000. "The Welfare of Children in Central India: Econometric Analysis and Policy Simulation," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 28(3), pages 263-287.
  3. Geeta Gandhi Kingdon & Jeemol Unni, 2001. "Education and Women's Labour Market Outcomes in India," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(2), pages 173-195.
  4. Nielsen, Helena Skyt, 1998. "Discrimination and detailed decomposition in a logit model," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 115-120, October.
  5. Ira N. Gang & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 1999. "Is Child Like Parent? Educational Attainment and Ethnic Origin," Departmental Working Papers 199614, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
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  8. Dreze, Jean & Kingdon, Geeta Gandhi, 2001. "School Participation in Rural India," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 5(1), pages 1-24, February.
  9. Ravallion, Martin & Wodon, Quentin, 1999. "Does child labor displace schooling? - evidence on behavioral responses to an enrollment subsidy," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2116, The World Bank.
  10. Behrman, Jere R & Wolfe, Barbara L, 1984. "The Socioeconomic Impact of Schooling in a Developing Country," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 66(2), pages 296-303, May.
  11. Blackaby, David H, et al, 1997. "A Picture of Male and Female Unemployment among Britain's Ethnic Minorities," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 44(2), pages 182-97, May.
  12. Duraisamy, P., 1992. "Gender, Intrafamily Allocation of Resources and Child Schooling in South India," Papers 667, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
  13. Foster, Andrew D & Rosenzweig, Mark R, 1996. "Technical Change and Human-Capital Returns and Investments: Evidence from the Green Revolution," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(4), pages 931-53, September.
  14. George Psacharopoulos & Harry Anthony Patrinos, 1997. "Family size, schooling and child labor in Peru - An empirical analysis," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 10(4), pages 387-405.
  15. Borooah, Vani, 2003. "Births, Infants and Children: an Econometric Portrait of Women and Children in India," MPRA Paper 19620, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  16. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2002. "Identity and Schooling: Some Lessons for the Economics of Education," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(4), pages 1167-1201, December.
  17. Ashwini Deshpande, 2000. "Recasting Economic Inequality," Review of Social Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 58(3), pages 381-399.
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