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Change and persistence in the Age of Modernization: Saint-Germain-d’Anxure, 1730–1895

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  • Blanc, Guillaume
  • Wacziarg, Romain

Abstract

Using a unique, comprehensive household-level dataset for a single French village, we study the process of modernization during a period of rapid institutional and demographic transformation. We document changes in fertility, mortality, literacy and intergenerational social mobility. The fall in fertility followed the French Revolution and the Age of Enlightenment, and preceded the rise in education by several decades. Rising literacy followed an increase in the supply of schooling due to the Guizot Law. All these changes occurred in the absence of industrialization in and around the village. We conclude that institutional and cultural changes originating outside the village were likely the dominant forces accounting for its modernization.

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  • Blanc, Guillaume & Wacziarg, Romain, 2020. "Change and persistence in the Age of Modernization: Saint-Germain-d’Anxure, 1730–1895," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 78(C).
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:exehis:v:78:y:2020:i:c:s0014498320300474
    DOI: 10.1016/j.eeh.2020.101352
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    Cited by:

    1. Montalbo, Adrien, 2021. "Schools without a law: Primary education in France from the Revolution to the Guizot Law," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 79(C).
    2. Brian Beach & W. Walker Hanlon, 2019. "Censorship, Family Planning, and the Historical Fertility Transition," NBER Working Papers 25752, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Enrico Spolaore & Romain Wacziarg, 2014. "Fertility and Modernity," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 0779, Department of Economics, Tufts University.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Modernization; Growth; Demographic transition; Human capital; Institutions;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • O43 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Institutions and Growth
    • O52 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Europe
    • N13 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • N33 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • N43 - Economic History - - Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • Z10 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - General

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