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Emigration during the French Revolution: Consequences in the Short and Longue Durée

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  • Franck, Raphael
  • Michalopoulos, Stelios

Abstract

During the French Revolution, more than 100,000 supporters of the Old Regime, fled France. Local elites in some departments were dramatically reduced, whereas in others the social structure remained largely unchanged. Instrumenting emigration with temperature shocks during an inflection point of the Revolution, the summer of 1792, we find that émigrés have a non-monotonic impact on comparative development. During the 19th century, the decline of landed elites in high-emigration regions led to the fragmentation of agricultural holdings, depressing labor productivity. Nevertheless, this facilitated the rise in human capital investments, leading to a reversal in economic performance during the 20th century.

Suggested Citation

  • Franck, Raphael & Michalopoulos, Stelios, 2018. "Emigration during the French Revolution: Consequences in the Short and Longue Durée," CEPR Discussion Papers 12573, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:12573
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    Cited by:

    1. Finley, Theresa & Franck, Raphaël & Johnson, Noel, 2020. "The Effects of Land Redistribution: Evidence from the French Revolution," CEPR Discussion Papers 14522, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Guriev, Sergei & Papaioannou, Elias, 2020. "The Political Economy of Populism," CEPR Discussion Papers 14433, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Carillo, Mario Francesco, 2018. "Agricultural policy and long-run development: evidence from Mussolini's Battle for Grain," MPRA Paper 88941, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Mara P. Squicciarini, 2020. "Devotion and Development: Religiosity, Education, and Economic Progress in Nineteenth-Century France," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 110(11), pages 3454-3491, November.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Climate Shocks; Development; Elites; France; Revolution;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • N23 - Economic History - - Financial Markets and Institutions - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • N24 - Economic History - - Financial Markets and Institutions - - - Europe: 1913-

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