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Female Socialization: How Daughters Affect Their Legislator Fathers' Voting on Women's Issues

  • Ebonya Washington
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    Economists have long concerned themselves with environmental influences, such as neighborhood, peers and family on individuals' beliefs and behaviors. However, the impact of children on parents' behavior has been little studied. Parenting daughters, psychologists have shown, increases feminist sympathies. I test the hypothesis that children, much like neighbors or peers, can influence adult behavior. I demonstrate that the propensity to vote liberally on reproductive rights is significantly increasing in a congress person's proportion of daughters. The result demonstrates not only the relevance of child to parent behavioral influence, but also the importance of personal ideology in a legislator's voting decisions as it is not explained away by voter preferences.

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    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w11924.pdf
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    Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 11924.

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    Date of creation: Jan 2006
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    Publication status: published as Washington, Ebonya Lia. “Female Socialization: How Daughters Affect Their Legislator Fathers’ Voting on Women’s Issues.” American Economic Review 98, 1 (2008): 311-332.
    Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:11924
    Note: CH POL
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    1. Ebonya Washington & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2009. "Sticking with Your Vote: Cognitive Dissonance and Political Attitudes," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 86-111, January.
    2. Jacob M. Markman & Eric A. Hanushek & John F. Kain & Steven G. Rivkin, 2003. "Does peer ability affect student achievement?," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(5), pages 527-544.
    3. Black, Sandra & Devereux, Paul J. & Salvanes, Kjell G, 2003. "Why the Apple Doesn't Fall: Understanding Intergenerational Transmission of Human Capital," CEPR Discussion Papers 4150, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Sandra E. Black & Paul J. Devereux & Kjell G. Salvanes, 2005. "Why the Apple Doesn't Fall Far: Understanding Intergenerational Transmission of Human Capital," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 437-449, March.
    5. Bruce Sacerdote, 2004. "What Happens When We Randomly Assign Children to Families?," NBER Working Papers 10894, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Gordon B. Dahl & Enrico Moretti, 2004. "The Demand for Sons: Evidence from Divorce, Fertility, and Shotgun Marriage," NBER Working Papers 10281, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Esther Duflo & Raghabendra Chattopadhyay, 2004. "Women as policy makers: Evidence from a randomized policy experiment in india," Framed Field Experiments 00224, The Field Experiments Website.
    8. Ruhm, Christopher J., 2005. "Maternal Employment and Adolescent Development," IZA Discussion Papers 1673, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. Rohini Pande, 2002. "Can mandated political representation increase policy influence for disadvantaged minorities? Theory and evidence from India," Discussion Papers 0102-62, Columbia University, Department of Economics.
    10. Bertrand, M. & Luttmer, E.F.P. & Mullainathan, S., 1998. "Network Effects and Welfare Cultures," Papers 201, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Public and International Affairs.
    11. Levitt, Steven D, 1996. "How Do Senators Vote? Disentangling the Role of Voter Preferences, Party Affiliation, and Senate Ideology," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 425-41, June.
    12. Raquel Fernández & Alessandra Fogli & Claudia Olivetti, 2004. "Mothers and Sons: Preference Formation and Female Labor Force Dynamics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(4), pages 1249-1299, November.
    13. Gordon B. Dahl & Lance Lochner, 2005. "The Impact of Family Income on Child Achievement," NBER Working Papers 11279, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Nancy E. Reichman & Hope Corman & Kelly Noonan, 2003. "Effects of Child Health on Parents' Relationship Status," NBER Working Papers 9610, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Caroline Hoxby, 2000. "Peer Effects in the Classroom: Learning from Gender and Race Variation," NBER Working Papers 7867, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Lena Edlund & Rohini Pande, 2002. "Why Have Women Become Left-Wing? The Political Gender Gap And The Decline In Marriage," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(3), pages 917-961, August.
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