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Exposure to foreign media and changes in cultural traits: Evidence from naming patterns in France

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  • Disdier, Anne-Célia
  • Head, Keith
  • Mayer, Thierry

Abstract

Free trade in audio-visual services has faced opposition on the grounds that foreign media undermine domestic culture, and ultimately, global diversity. Using a long panel of French birth registries, we assess the media-culture link using name frequencies as a measure of tastes. Controlling for the number of people who currently have a name and unobserved name effects, our regressions show that media influences choices via selective imitation. Parents are much more likely to adopt media names that they associate with youth. Using estimated parameters, we simulate our model of name choice to reveal that, absent foreign media, fewer than 5% of French babies would have been named differently. Our simulations also suggest a positive effect of foreign media on the welfare of parents.

Suggested Citation

  • Disdier, Anne-Célia & Head, Keith & Mayer, Thierry, 2010. "Exposure to foreign media and changes in cultural traits: Evidence from naming patterns in France," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(2), pages 226-238, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:inecon:v:80:y:2010:i:2:p:226-238
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    8. Keith Head & Thierry Mayer, 2008. "Detection Of Local Interactions From The Spatial Pattern Of Names In France," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(1), pages 67-95.
    9. Disdier, Anne-Célia & Head, Keith & Mayer, Thierry, 2010. "Exposure to foreign media and changes in cultural traits: Evidence from naming patterns in France," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(2), pages 226-238, March.
    10. James E. Rauch & Vitor Trindade, 2009. "Neckties in the tropics: a model of international trade and cultural diversity," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 42(3), pages 809-843, August.
    11. Marianne Bertrand & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2004. "Are Emily and Greg More Employable Than Lakisha and Jamal? A Field Experiment on Labor Market Discrimination," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(4), pages 991-1013, September.
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    15. Eckhard Janeba, 2004. "International Trade and Cultural Identity," NBER Working Papers 10426, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Janeba, Eckhard, 2007. "International trade and consumption network externalities," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(4), pages 781-803, May.
    17. Francois, Patrick & van Ypersele, Tanguy, 2002. "On the protection of cultural goods," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(2), pages 359-369, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Keith Head & Thierry Mayer, 2013. "What separates us? Sources of resistance to globalization," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 46(4), pages 1196-1231, November.
    2. Olivier, Jacques & Thoenig, Mathias & Verdier, Thierry, 2008. "Globalization and the dynamics of cultural identity," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 356-370, December.
    3. Maystre, Nicolas & Olivier, Jacques & Thoenig, Mathias & Verdier, Thierry, 2014. "Product-based cultural change: Is the village global?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(2), pages 212-230.
    4. Stepan Jurajda & Dejan Kovac, 2016. "What's in a Name in a War," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp573, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
    5. Keith Head & Thierry Mayer, 2008. "Detection Of Local Interactions From The Spatial Pattern Of Names In France," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(1), pages 67-95.
    6. Algan, Yann & Hémet, Camille & Laitin, David D., 2011. "Diversity and Public Goods: A Natural Experiment with Exogenous Residential Allocation," IZA Discussion Papers 6053, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    7. Esther Hauk & Giovanni Immordino, 2014. "Parents, Television and Cultural Change," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 124(579), pages 1040-1065, September.
    8. Eiji Yamamura & Inyong Shin, 2016. "Effect of consuming imported cultural goods on trading partners’ tolerance toward immigrants: the case of Japanese anime in Korea," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 152(4), pages 681-703, November.
    9. Hellmanzik, Christiane & Schmitz, Martin, 2015. "Virtual proximity and audiovisual services trade," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 77(C), pages 82-101.
    10. Maria MASOOD, 2014. "New Evidence on Development and Cultural Trade: Diversification, Reconcentration and Domination," Working Papers P85, FERDI.
    11. Disdier, Anne-Célia & Head, Keith & Mayer, Thierry, 2010. "Exposure to foreign media and changes in cultural traits: Evidence from naming patterns in France," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(2), pages 226-238, March.
    12. Fernando Ferreira & Joel Waldfogel, 2010. "Pop Internationalism: Has A Half Century of World Music Trade Displaced Local Culture?," NBER Working Papers 15964, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Janeba, Eckhard, 2007. "International trade and consumption network externalities," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(4), pages 781-803, May.
    14. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/10141 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/c8dmi8nm4pdjkuc9g8mcn8chn is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Endogenous tastes Cultural transmission Television Cinema Popular music;

    JEL classification:

    • F15 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Economic Integration
    • D19 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Other
    • Z10 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - General

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