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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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File URL: http://www.recent.unimore.it/wp/RECent-wp75.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Modena and Reggio E., Dept. of Economics "Marco Biagi" in its series Center for Economic Research (RECent) with number 075.

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Length: pages 28
Date of creation: Nov 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mod:recent:075
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.recent.unimore.it/

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  4. Bertocchi, Graziella & Dimico, Arcangelo, 2010. "Slavery, Education, and Inequality," IZA Discussion Papers 5329, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  12. 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.
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  16. Collins, William J. & Margo, Robert A., 2006. "Historical Perspectives on Racial Differences in Schooling in the United States," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
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  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.
  20. Galor, Oded & Moav, Omer & Vollrath, Dietrich, 2008. "Inequality in Land Ownership, the Emergence of Human Capital Promoting Institutions and the Great Divergence," CEPR Discussion Papers 6751, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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