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Il Mezzogiorno fra storia e pubblicistica. Una replica a Daniele e Malanima
[Southern Italy between history and journalistic books. A reply to Daniele and Malanima]

  • Felice, Emanuele

The article responds to Daniele and Malanima’s harsh criticism (Perché il Sud è rimasto indietro? Il Mezzogiorno fra storia e pubblicistica, Rivista di Storia Economica, 2014, n. 1) of my last book (Perché il Sud è rimasto indietro, Il Mulino, 2013), about the reconstruction of regional disparities in Italy and the causes of the Italian North-South divide. For what concerns the estimates of regional GDP, it is shown that: my estimation procedure for 1871 was transparent; the interpolation procedure presented by Daniele and Malanima is not replicable, and its results look ambiguous; the procedure through which Daniele and Malanima claim to have converted regional estimates from historical to current borders is incompatible with their own results; nowadays, a new and more accurate estimate at current borders is available. Con-cerning the re-interpretation of the North-South divide, I find that Daniele and Malanima present my work in an unfair way, which leads them to a number of interpretative errors (as in reading the economet-ric results) and to specious controversies; furthermore, the two authors do not consider important or re-cent findings of the historical research (while at the same time supporting a historically unreliable journal-istic literature on Southern Italy) and refer to economic models in a way that is not always correct, neither accurate. They also champion a view of history which looks to me short-sighted and contradictory. L’articolo risponde alle aspre critiche mosse da Daniele e Malanima (Perché il Sud è rimasto indie-tro? Il Mezzogiorno fra storia e pubblicistica, Rivista di Storia Economica, 2014, n. 1) al mio ultimo libro (Perché il Sud è rimasto indietro, Il Mulino, 2013), circa la ricostruzione dei divari regionali in Italia e l’interpretazione della questione meridionale. Per quel che riguarda la ricostruzione dei divari, si mostra che: la mia procedura di stima per il 1871 è trasparente; la procedura di interpolazione realizzata da Da-niele e Malanima non è replicabile e si accompagna a risultati poco chiari; il metodo con il quale Daniele e Malanima dichiarano di essere passati dai confini storici ai confini attuali è incompatibile con i loro risultati; disponiamo oggi di una nuova ricostruzione per anni campione, ai confini attuali, più approfon-dita. Per quel che concerne la reinterpretazione del divario Nord-Sud, a mio giudizio Daniele e Malanima propongono una lettura parziale del mio lavoro, che li conduce a errori di interpretazione (ad esempio nel leggere i modelli econometrici) o a forzature polemiche; inoltre i due autori non considerano importanti o recenti contributi della ricerca storica (mentre supportano una certa pubblicistica storicamente inattendibi-le in circolazione sul Mezzogiorno) e fanno un utilizzo non sempre appropriato della letteratura economi-ca. Nemmeno la loro visione della storia, e all’interno di questa del comune mestiere di «costruttori di stime», a me sembra condivisibile.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 55830.

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Date of creation: 07 May 2014
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:55830
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  1. Fenoaltea Stefano & Ciccarelli Carlo, 2006. "Mining Production in Italy, 1861-1913: National and Regional Time series," Rivista di storia economica, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 2, pages 141-208.
  2. Ciccarelli Carlo & Fenoaltea Stefano, 2008. "Construction in Italy's Regions, 1861-1913," Rivista di storia economica, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 3, pages 303-340.
  3. Ciccarelli Carlo & Fenoaltea Stefano, 2008. "The Growth of the Utilities Industries in Italy's Regions, 1861-1913," Rivista di storia economica, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 2, pages 175-206.
  4. Emanuele Felice & Michelangelo Vasta, 2012. "Passive Modernization? The New Human Development Index and Its Components in Italy’s Regions (1871-2007)," UHE Working papers 2012_10, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Departament d'Economia i Història Econòmica, Unitat d'Història Econòmica.
  5. Emanuele Felice & Giovanni Vecchi, 2013. "Italy’s Growth and Decline, 1861-2011," CEIS Research Paper 293, Tor Vergata University, CEIS, revised 11 Oct 2013.
  6. Giovanni Federico & Paolo Malanima, 2004. "Progress, decline, growth: product and productivity in Italian agriculture, 1000-2000," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 57(3), pages 437-464, 08.
  7. Carlo Ciccarelli & Stefano Fenoaltea, 2009. "Shipbuilding in Italy, 1861-1913: the burden of the evidence," Historical Social Research (Section 'Cliometrics'), Association Française de Cliométrie (AFC), vol. 34(2), pages 333-373.
  8. Emanuele Felice, 2009. "Estimating regional GDP in Italy (1871-2001): sources, methodology and results," Working Papers in Economic History wp09-07, Universidad Carlos III, Instituto Figuerola de Historia y Ciencias Sociales.
  9. Felice Emanuele, 2005. "Il reddito delle regioni italiane nel 1938 e nel 1951. Una stima basata sul costo del lavoro," Rivista di storia economica, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 1, pages 3-30.
  10. Vittorio Daniele & Paolo Malanima, 2007. "Il prodotto delle regioni e il divario Nord-Sud in Italia (1861-2004)," Rivista di Politica Economica, SIPI Spa, vol. 97(2), pages 267-316, March-Apr.
  11. Emanuele Felice, 2011. "Regional value added in Italy, 1891–2001, and the foundation of a long‐term picture," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 64(3), pages 929-950, 08.
  12. Emanuele Felice, 2009. "Regional value added in Italy (1891-2001): estimates, elaborations," Working Papers in Economic History wp09-08, Universidad Carlos III, Instituto Figuerola de Historia y Ciencias Sociales.
  13. Emanuele Felice, 2012. "Regional convergence in Italy, 1891–2001: testing human and social capital," Cliometrica, Journal of Historical Economics and Econometric History, Association Française de Cliométrie (AFC), vol. 6(3), pages 267-306, October.
  14. Emanuele Felice, 2013. "Regional income inequality in Italy in the long run (1871–2001). Patterns and determinants," UHE Working papers 2013_08, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Departament d'Economia i Història Econòmica, Unitat d'Història Econòmica.
  15. Felice Emanuele, 2005. "Il valore aggiunto regionale. Una stima per il 1891 e per il 1911 e alcune elaborazioni di lungo periodo (1891-1971)," Rivista di storia economica, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 3, pages 273-314.
  16. Ciccarelli Carlo & Fenoaltea Stefano, 2010. "Metalmaking in Italy, 1861-1913: National and Regional Time Series," Rivista di storia economica, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 1, pages 121-154.
  17. Fenoaltea, Stefano, 2003. "Peeking Backward: Regional Aspects of Industrial Growth in Post-Unification Italy," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 63(04), pages 1059-1102, December.
  18. Federico Giovanni, 2003. "Le nuove stime della produzione agricola italiana, 1860-1910: primi risultati e implicazioni," Rivista di storia economica, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 3, pages 359-382.
  19. Ciccarelli Carlo & Fenoaltea Stefano, 2008. "The Chemicals, Coal and Petroleum Products, and Rubber Industries in Italy's Regions, 1861-1913: Time-Series Estimates," Rivista di storia economica, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 1, pages 3-58.
  20. Fenoaltea Stefano, 2004. "Textile production in Italy's regions, 1861-1913," Rivista di storia economica, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 2, pages 145-174.
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