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Class Origin, Family Culture, and Intergenerational Correlation of Education in Rural China

  • Sato, Hiroshi
  • Li, Shi

This paper examines the determinants of intergenerational correlation of education in rural China by using a data from a large survey of households. Three generations who completed education during the period from pre-1949 to the beginning of the 2000s are included. The focus is on the influence of family class status (chengfen) on offspring education. Our investigation suggest that family class status is still important for the intergenerational transmission of education. The offspring of landlord/rich peasant families are more likely to achieve higher educational attainment, even though parental education, family wealth, and other family characteristics are the same. The unique determinant of the intergenerational transmission of education in the postreform era is found to be an education-oriented family culture, created as an intergenerational cultural rebound against class-based social discrimination during the Maoist era. We have also found that the cultural reaction is a combination of class-specific effects with cohort-specific effects.

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File URL: http://hermes-ir.lib.hit-u.ac.jp/rs/bitstream/10086/16953/1/070econDP06-19.pdf
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Paper provided by Graduate School of Economics, Hitotsubashi University in its series Discussion Papers with number 2006-19.

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Length: 41 p.
Date of creation: Feb 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hit:econdp:2006-19
Contact details of provider: Phone: +81-42-580-8000
Web page: http://www.econ.hit-u.ac.jp/

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  1. Lillard, L.A. & Willis, R.J., 1995. "Intergenerational Educational Mobility, Effects of Family and State in Malaysia," Papers 95-02, RAND - Reprint Series.
  2. Yaohui Zhao, 1997. "Labor Migration and Returns to Rural Education in China," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 79(4), pages 1278-1287.
  3. Scott Rozelle & Liniux Zhang & Jikun Huang, . "Employment, Emerging Labor Markets, and the Role of Education in Rural China," REAP Papers 22568, Rural Education Action Project at Stanford University.
  4. Robert Erikson & John H. Goldthorpe, 2002. "Intergenerational Inequality: A Sociological Perspective," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(3), pages 31-44, Summer.
  5. Appleton, Simon & Song, Lina & Xia, Qingjie, 2005. "Has China crossed the river? The evolution of wage structure in urban China during reform and retrenchment," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 644-663, December.
  6. Fang, Hanming & Norman, Peter, 2001. "Government-Mandated Discriminatory Policies," Working Paper Series 562, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  7. Nathan D. Grawe & Casey B. Mulligan, 2002. "Economic Interpretations of Intergenerational Correlations," NBER Working Papers 8948, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Hanming Fang & Peter Norman, 2006. "Government-Mandated Discriminatory Policies: Theory And Evidence," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 47(2), pages 361-389, 05.
  9. John Whalley & Shunming Zhang, 2004. "Inequality Change in China and (Hukou) Labour Mobility Restrictions," NBER Working Papers 10683, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Jacob Mincer & Solomon Polachek, 1974. "Family Investments in Human Capital: Earnings of Women," NBER Chapters, in: Marriage, Family, Human Capital, and Fertility, pages 76-110 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Song, Lina & Appleton, Simon & Knight, John, 2006. "Why Do Girls in Rural China Have Lower School Enrollment?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 34(9), pages 1639-1653, September.
  12. Solon, Gary, 1992. "Intergenerational Income Mobility in the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 393-408, June.
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