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Engines of Liberation

Electricity was born at the dawn of the last century. Households were inundated with a flood of new consumer durable goods. What was the impact of this consumer durable goods revolution? It is argued here that the consumer goods revolution liberated women from the home. To analyze this hypothesis, a Beckerian model of household production is developed. Households must decide whether to adopt the new technologies or not, and whether married woman should work. Can such a model explain the rise in married female labor-force participation that occurred in the last century? Yes.

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Paper provided by Economie d'Avant Garde in its series Economie d'Avant Garde Research Reports with number 2.

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Length: 51 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:eag:rereps:2
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.jeremygreenwood.net/EAG.htm

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  1. Yongsung Chang & Frank Schorfheide, 2002. "Labor-Supply Shifts and Economic Fluctuations," Macroeconomics 0204005, EconWPA.
  2. Stephen L. Parente & Richard Rogerson & Randall Wright, 2000. "Homework in Development Economics: Household Production and the Wealth of Nations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(4), pages 680-687, August.
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  4. Dora L. Costa, 2000. "From Mill Town to Board Room: The Rise of Women's Paid Labor," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(4), pages 101-122, Fall.
  5. Claudia Goldin, 1990. "Understanding the Gender Gap: An Economic History of American Women," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number gold90-1, June.
  6. Ellen R. McGrattan & Richard Rogerson & Randall Wright, 1995. "An equilibrium model of the business cycle with household production and fiscal policy," Staff Report 191, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  7. Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2000. "Gender Differences in Pay," NBER Working Papers 7732, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Gary D. Hansen & Edward C. Prescott, 2002. "Malthus to Solow," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(4), pages 1205-1217, September.
  9. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum, 1990. "Current real business cycle theories and aggregate labor market fluctuations," Discussion Paper / Institute for Empirical Macroeconomics 24, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  10. Galor, Oded & Weil, David, 1995. "The Gender Gap, Fertility and Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 1157, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Kristin M. Roberts & Peter Rupert, 1995. "The myth of the overworked American," Economic Commentary, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, issue Jan.
  12. Robert J. Gordon, 1990. "The Measurement of Durable Goods Prices," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number gord90-1, June.
  13. King, R.G. & Rebelo, S.T., 1989. "Transitional Dynamics And Economic Growth In The Neoclassical Model," RCER Working Papers 206, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  14. Fernández, Raquel & Fogli, Alessandra & Olivetti, Claudia, 2002. "Marrying Your Mom: Preference Transmission and Women's Labour and Education Choices," CEPR Discussion Papers 3592, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  15. Per Krusell & Lee E. Ohanian & Jose-Victor Rios-Rull & Giovanni L. Violante, 1997. "Capital-skill complementarity and inequality: a macroeconomic analysis," Staff Report 239, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  16. Paul Gomme & Finn E. Kydland & Peter Rupert, 2001. "Home Production Meets Time to Build," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(5), pages 1115-1131, October.
  17. repec:ucp:bknber:9780226304557 is not listed on IDEAS
  18. Rios-Rull, Jose-Victor, 1993. "Working in the Market, Working at Home, and the Acquisition of Skills: A General-Equilibrium Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(4), pages 893-907, September.
  19. Claudia Goldin & Lawrence F. Katz, 1996. "The Origins of Technology-Skill Complementarity," NBER Working Papers 5657, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Caselli, Francesco & Coleman II, Wilbur John, 1999. "How Regions Converge," CEPR Discussion Papers 2191, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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