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Closing the Gap or Widening the Divide: The Effects of the G.I. Bill and World War II on the Educational Outcomes of Black Americans

  • Turner, Sarah
  • Bound, John

The effects of the G.I. Bill on collegiate attainment may have differed for black and white Americans owing to differential returns to education and differences in opportunities at colleges and universities, with men in the South facing explicitly segregated colleges. The empirical evidence suggests that World War II and the availability of G.I. benefits had a substantial and positive impact on the educational attainment of white men and black men born outside the South. However, for those black veterans likely to be limited to the South in their educational choices, the G.I. Bill had little effect on collegiate outcomes, resulting in the exacerbation of the educational differences between black and white men from southern states.

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Article provided by Cambridge University Press in its journal The Journal of Economic History.

Volume (Year): 63 (2003)
Issue (Month): 01 (March)
Pages: 145-177

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Handle: RePEc:cup:jechis:v:63:y:2003:i:01:p:145-177_00
Contact details of provider: Postal: Cambridge University Press, UPH, Shaftesbury Road, Cambridge CB2 8BS UK
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  1. Joshua Angrist, 1988. "Grouped Data Estimation and Testing in Simple Labor Supply Models," Working Papers 614, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  2. Joshua D. Angrist & Guido W. Imbens, 1995. "Identification and Estimation of Local Average Treatment Effects," NBER Technical Working Papers 0118, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Card, David & Krueger, Alan B, 1992. "School Quality and Black-White Relative Earnings: A Direct Assessment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(1), pages 151-200, February.
  4. Heckman, James J. & Robb, Richard Jr., 1985. "Alternative methods for evaluating the impact of interventions : An overview," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 30(1-2), pages 239-267.
  5. John Bound & Sarah Turner, 2002. "Going to War and Going to College: Did World War II and the G.I. Bill Increase Educational Attainment for Returning Veterans?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 20(4), pages 784-815, October.
  6. William J. Collins, 2001. "Race, Roosevelt, and Wartime Production: Fair Employment in World War II Labor Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(1), pages 272-286, March.
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