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Kinship matters: Long-term mortality consequences of childhood migration, historical evidence from northeast China, 1792–1909

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  • Dong, Hao
  • Lee, James Z.

Abstract

Unlike previous migration studies which mainly focus on individual migration, this article examines the long-term mortality consequences of childhood migration and resettlement. Using a unique Chinese historical population database, we trace 30,517 males from childhood onwards between 1792 and 1909, 542 of whom experienced childhood migration. We apply discrete-time event-history analysis and include a fixed effect of common grandfather to account for unobservable characteristics of the extended family. We also explore the influence of social networks on early-life migration experience by including kin network at destination. Our findings suggest that migration in childhood has substantial long-term effects on survivorship in later ages. From age 16 sui to 45 sui, kin network at destination mediates the negative effects of childhood migration and lowers mortality risks. Moreover, child migrants who survive to older ages subsequently experience lower mortality. Such findings contribute to a better understanding of the implications of social behavior and social context for human health.

Suggested Citation

  • Dong, Hao & Lee, James Z., 2014. "Kinship matters: Long-term mortality consequences of childhood migration, historical evidence from northeast China, 1792–1909," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 119(C), pages 274-283.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:119:y:2014:i:c:p:274-283
    DOI: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2013.10.024
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    Cited by:

    1. Hao Dong & Cameron Campbell & Satomi Kurosu & Wenshan Yang & James Lee, 2015. "New Sources for Comparative Social Science: Historical Population Panel Data From East Asia," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 52(3), pages 1061-1088, June.
    2. repec:eee:socmed:v:202:y:2018:i:c:p:61-69 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. repec:spr:demogr:v:55:y:2018:i:2:d:10.1007_s13524-018-0653-z is not listed on IDEAS

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