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The Evolution of the Racial Gap in Education and the Legacy of Slavery

  • Graziella Bertocchi

    ()

  • Arcangelo Dimico

    ()

We study the evolution of racial educational inequality across US states from 1940 to 2000. We show that throughout this period, despite evidence of convergence, the racial gap in attainment between blacks and whites has been persistently determined by the initial gap. We obtain these results with 2SLS estimates where slavery is used as an instrument for the initial gap. The excludability of slavery is preliminarily established by instrumenting it with the share of disembarked slaves from the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade. Using the same approach we also find that income growth is negatively affected by the initial racial gap in education and that slavery affects growth indirectly through this channel

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Paper provided by University of Modena and Reggio E., Faculty of Economics "Marco Biagi" in its series Department of Economics with number 0672.

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Length: pages 59
Date of creation: Nov 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mod:depeco:0672
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.economia.unimore.it/

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  1. Charles I. Jones, 2002. "Sources of U.S. Economic Growth in a World of Ideas," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(1), pages 220-239, March.
  2. Barro, Robert J & Sala-i-Martin, Xavier, 1992. "Convergence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(2), pages 223-51, April.
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  4. Card, David & Krueger, Alan B, 1992. "School Quality and Black-White Relative Earnings: A Direct Assessment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(1), pages 151-200, February.
  5. Nathan Nunn, 2007. "The Long-Term Effects of Africa's Slave Trades," NBER Working Papers 13367, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Bruce Sacerdote, 2002. "Slavery and the Intergenerational Transmission of Human Capital," NBER Working Papers 9227, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  8. Mark W. Frank, 2009. "Inequality And Growth In The United States: Evidence From A New State-Level Panel Of Income Inequality Measures," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 47(1), pages 55-68, 01.
  9. Graziella Bertocchi & Arcangelo Dimico, 2010. "Slavery, Education, and Inequality," Working Paper Series 26_10, The Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis.
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  13. Welch, Finis, 1973. "Black-White Differences in Returns to Schooling," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 63(5), pages 893-907, December.
  14. Partridge, Mark D, 1997. "Is Inequality Harmful for Growth? Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(5), pages 1019-32, December.
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  16. Nunn, Nathan & Wantchekon, Leonard, 2011. "The Slave Trade and the Origins of Mistrust in Africa," Scholarly Articles 11986331, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  17. William J. Collins & Robert A. Margo, 2003. "Historical Perspectives on Racial Differences in Schooling in the United States," NBER Working Papers 9770, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Fishback, Price V & Baskin, John S, 1991. "Narrowing the Black-White Gap in Child Literacy in 1910: The Roles of School Inputs and Family Inputs," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(4), pages 725-28, November.
  19. Heckman, James J, 1990. "The Central Role of the South in Accounting for the Economic Progress of Black Americans," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 242-46, May.
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