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Culture: Persistence and Evolution

  • Francesco Giavazzi

    (Bocconi University)

  • Ivan Petkov

    (Boston College)

  • Fabio Schiantarelli

    ()

    (Boston College
    IZA)

This paper presents evidence on the speed of evolution (or lack thereof) of a wide range of values and beliefs of different generations of European immigrants to the US. The main result is that persistence differs greatly across cultural attitudes. Some, for instance deep personal religious values, some fam-ily and moral values, and political orientation are very persistent. Other, such as attitudes toward cooperation, redistribution, effort, children independence, premarital sex, and even the frequency of religious practice or the intensity of association with one’s religion, converge rather quickly. Moreover, the results obtained studying higher generation immigrants differ greatly from those obtained limiting the analysis to the second generation, and imply lesser degree of persistence. Finally, we show that persistence is ”culture specific” in the sense that the country from which one’s ancestors came matters for the pattern of generational convergence.

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Paper provided by Boston College Department of Economics in its series Boston College Working Papers in Economics with number 853.

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Date of creation: 18 Mar 2014
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Handle: RePEc:boc:bocoec:853
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