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Cultural transmission and the evolution of gender roles

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  • Hiller, Victor
  • Baudin, Thomas

Abstract

Investigating how gender roles evolve over time is crucial to understand gender inequalities and their dynamics. We propose a cultural transmission model in which parents may socialize their sons and daughters differently and we derive gender specific cultural dynamics. We show how interactions between socialization behaviors and household’s economic decisions shape these dynamics and the long-run definition of gender roles. We apply our theory to cultural traits related to the prescribed role of men and women within the society. Multiple equilibria may arise and an economy may be trapped in a situation in which males and females share inegalitarian views about gender roles. Institutional changes as a greater availability of child care facilities may help to reach another equilibrium in which a large proportion of individuals hold more egalitarian views about these roles.

Suggested Citation

  • Hiller, Victor & Baudin, Thomas, 2016. "Cultural transmission and the evolution of gender roles," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 84(C), pages 8-23.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:matsoc:v:84:y:2016:i:c:p:8-23
    DOI: 10.1016/j.mathsocsci.2016.08.002
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    Cited by:

    1. Thomas TB Baudin & David De la Croix & Paula Eugenia Gobbi, 2019. "Childlessness and Economic Development: a Survey," Working Papers ECARES 2019-03, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    2. Victor Gay, 2017. "The Legacy of the Missing Men: The Long-Run Impact of World War I on Female Labor Force Participation," 2017 Papers pga905, Job Market Papers.

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