IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/sza/wpaper/wpapers190.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The transmission of longevity across generations: The case of the settler Cape Colony

Author

Listed:
  • Patrizio Piraino

    (Department of Economics, University of Cape Town)

  • Sean Muller

    (Department of Economics, University of Cape Town)

  • Jeanne Cilliers

    (Department of Economics, University of Stellenbosch)

  • Johan Fourie

    (Department of Economics, University of Stellenbosch)

Abstract

The literature on parent-child correlations in socioeconomic status provides little evidence on long-term multigenerational dynamics. This is because most studies of intergenerational status persistence are based on two (at most three) successive generations. Our analysis adds to the intergenerational mobility literature by studying the correlation in longevity across multiple generations of a historical population. By using information on birth and death dates of eighteenth and nineteenth century settlers in South Africa’s Cape Colony, we are able to estimate the intergenerational transmission of longevity, which is found to be positive and significant. Our analysis confirms one of the most consistent findings in the social sciences: the correlation between the status of parents and that of their offspring is positive and significant.

Suggested Citation

  • Patrizio Piraino & Sean Muller & Jeanne Cilliers & Johan Fourie, 2013. "The transmission of longevity across generations: The case of the settler Cape Colony," Working Papers 14/2013, Stellenbosch University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:sza:wpaper:wpapers190
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.ekon.sun.ac.za/wpapers/2013/wp142013/wp-14-2013.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2013
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Anders Björklund & Mikael Lindahl & Erik Plug, 2006. "The Origins of Intergenerational Associations: Lessons from Swedish Adoption Data," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 121(3), pages 999-1028.
    2. Lindahl, Mikael & Palme, Mårten & Sandgren Massih, Sofia & Sjögren, Anna, 2012. "The intergenerational persistence of human capital: an empirical analysis of four generations," Working Paper Series 2012:12, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    3. Black, Sandra E. & Devereux, Paul J., 2011. "Recent Developments in Intergenerational Mobility," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 16, pages 1487-1541, Elsevier.
    4. Sophia Du Plessis & Stan Du Plessis, 2012. "Happy in the Service of the Company: The Purchasing Power of VOC Salaries at the Cape in the 18th Century," Economic History of Developing Regions, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 27(1), pages 125-149.
    5. Johan Fourie & Dieter von Fintel, 2010. "A History with Evidence: Income inequality in the Dutch Cape Colony," Working Papers 23/2010, Stellenbosch University, Department of Economics.
    6. Markus Jäntti & Eva Österbacka & Oddbjörn Raaum & Tor Eriksson & Anders Björklund, 2002. "Brother correlations in earnings in Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden compared to the United States," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 15(4), pages 757-772.
    7. Solon, Gary, 1999. "Intergenerational mobility in the labor market," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 29, pages 1761-1800, Elsevier.
    8. Bhashkar Mazumder, 2005. "Fortunate Sons: New Estimates of Intergenerational Mobility in the United States Using Social Security Earnings Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 87(2), pages 235-255, May.
    9. Sudhir Anand & Martin Ravallion, 1993. "Human Development in Poor Countries: On the Role of Private Incomes and Public Services," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(1), pages 133-150, Winter.
    10. Steven Haider & Gary Solon, 2006. "Life-Cycle Variation in the Association between Current and Lifetime Earnings," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(4), pages 1308-1320, September.
    11. Johan Fourie & Dieter von Fintel, 2010. "The dynamics of inequality in a newly settled, pre-industrial society: the case of the Cape Colony," Cliometrica, Journal of Historical Economics and Econometric History, Association Française de Cliométrie (AFC), vol. 4(3), pages 229-267, October.
    12. Clark, Gregory & Cummins, Neil, 2013. "Surnames and social mobility: England 1230-2012," Economic History Working Papers 54515, London School of Economics and Political Science, Department of Economic History.
    13. Hertz Tom & Jayasundera Tamara & Piraino Patrizio & Selcuk Sibel & Smith Nicole & Verashchagina Alina, 2008. "The Inheritance of Educational Inequality: International Comparisons and Fifty-Year Trends," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 7(2), pages 1-48, January.
    14. Duncan Thomas, 1994. "Like Father, like Son; Like Mother, like Daughter: Parental Resources and Child Height," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 29(4), pages 950-988.
    15. Solon, Gary, 1992. "Intergenerational Income Mobility in the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 393-408, June.
    16. Jeanne Cilliers & Johan Fourie, 2012. "New Estimates Of Settler Life Span And Other Demographic Trends In South Africa, 1652-1948," Economic History of Developing Regions, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 27(2), pages 61-86, December.
    17. repec:cai:popine:popu_p2001_13n1_0221 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Gary Solon & Marianne E. Page & Greg J. Duncan, 2000. "Correlations Between Neighboring Children In Their Subsequent Educational Attainment," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 82(3), pages 383-392, August.
    19. Ahlburg, Dennis, 1998. "Intergenerational Transmission of Health," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 265-270, May.
    20. Samuel Bowles & Herbert Gintis, 2002. "The Inheritance of Inequality," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(3), pages 3-30, Summer.
    21. Zimmerman, David J, 1992. "Regression toward Mediocrity in Economic Stature," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 409-429, June.
    22. Fourie, Johan & von Fintel, Dieter, 2010. "The Fruit of the Vine? An Augmented Endowments-Inequality Hypothesis and the Rise of an Elite in the Cape Colony," WIDER Working Paper Series 112, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    23. Johan Fourie & Dieter von Fintel, 2010. "The Fruit of the Vine? An Augmented Endowments-Inequality Hypothesis and the Rise of an Elite in the Cape Colony," WIDER Working Paper Series wp-2010-112, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    24. Oddbjørn Raaum & Kjell G. Salvanes & Erik O. Sørensen, 2006. "The Neighbourhood is Not What it Used to be," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 116(508), pages 200-222, January.
    25. John Parman, "undated". "Gender and Intergenerational Mobility: Using Health Outcomes to Compare Intergenerational Mobility Across Gender and Over Time," Working Papers 122, Department of Economics, College of William and Mary.
    26. Grawe, Nathan D., 2006. "Lifecycle bias in estimates of intergenerational earnings persistence," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(5), pages 551-570, October.
    27. Kevin M. Murphy & Robert H. Topel, 2006. "The Value of Health and Longevity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(5), pages 871-904, October.
    28. George Alter & Martin Dribe & Frans Poppel, 2007. "Widowhood, family size, and post-reproductive Mortality: a comparative Analysis of three populations in Nineteenth-Century Europe," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 44(4), pages 785-806, November.
    29. Bhashkar Mazumder, 2008. "Sibling similarities and economic inequality in the US," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 21(3), pages 685-701, July.
    30. Johan Fourie, 2013. "The remarkable wealth of the Dutch Cape Colony: measurements from eighteenth-century probate inventories," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 66(2), pages 419-448, May.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. The apple and the tree
      by Johan Fourie in Johan Fourie's Blog on 2013-09-04 11:51:05
    2. #HEJC papers for October 2013
      by academichealtheconomists in The Academic Health Economists' Blog on 2013-10-01 04:30:26

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Jeanne Cilliers & Johan Fourie, 2017. "Social mobility during South Africa’s industrial take-off," Working Papers 04/2017, Stellenbosch University, Department of Economics.
    2. Olivier Cabrignac & Arthur Charpentier & Ewen Gallic, 2020. "Modeling Joint Lives within Families," AMSE Working Papers 2021, Aix-Marseille School of Economics, France.
    3. Evelina Björkegren & Mikael Lindahl & Mårten Palme & Emilia Simeonova, 2022. "Pre- and Post-Birth Components of Intergenerational Persistence in Health and Longevity: Lessons from a Large Sample of Adoptees," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 57(1), pages 112-142.
    4. Olivier Cabrignac & Arthur Charpentier & Ewen Gallic, 2020. "Modeling Joint Lives within Families," Papers 2006.08446, arXiv.org.
    5. Martins, Igor & Cilliers, Jeanne & Fourie, Johan, 2019. "Legacies of Loss: The intergenerational outcomes of slaveholder compensation in the British Cape Colony," Lund Papers in Economic History 197, Lund University, Department of Economic History.
    6. Carsten Andersen, 2019. "Intergenerational Health Mobility: Evidence from Danish Registers," Economics Working Papers 2019-04, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
    7. Meier zu Selhausen, Felix P. & van Leeuwen, Marco H.D. & Weisdorf, Jacob L., 2015. "Social Mobility among Christian Africans: Evidence from Ugandan Marriage Registers 1895-2011," CAGE Online Working Paper Series 239, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
    8. Carsten Andersen, 2021. "Intergenerational health mobility: Evidence from Danish registers," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 30(12), pages 3186-3202, December.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Doan, Quang Hung & Nguyen, Ngoc Anh, 2016. "Intergenerational Income Mobility in Vietnam," MPRA Paper 70603, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Jantti, Markus & Jenkins, Stephen P., 2013. "Income mobility," ISER Working Paper Series 2013-23, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
    3. Florencia Torche, 2015. "Analyses of Intergenerational Mobility," The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, , vol. 657(1), pages 37-62, January.
    4. Bhashkar Mazumder, 2018. "Intergenerational Mobility in the United States: What We Have Learned from the PSID," The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, , vol. 680(1), pages 213-234, November.
    5. Carsten Andersen, 2019. "Intergenerational Health Mobility: Evidence from Danish Registers," Economics Working Papers 2019-04, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
    6. Galassi, Gabriela & Koll, David & Mayr, Lukas, 2019. "The Intergenerational Correlation of Employment: Is There a Role for Work Culture?," IZA Discussion Papers 12595, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    7. Gabriela Galassi & David Koll & Lukas Mayr, 2019. "The Intergenerational Correlation of Employment: Is There a Role for Work Culture?," Staff Working Papers 19-33, Bank of Canada.
    8. Martin Nybom & Jan Stuhler, 2016. "Heterogeneous Income Profiles and Lifecycle Bias in Intergenerational Mobility Estimation," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 51(1), pages 239-268.
    9. McIntosh, James & Munk, Martin D., 2009. "Social class, family background, and intergenerational mobility," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 107-117, January.
    10. Paul Hufe & Andreas Peichl & Daniel Weishaar, 2018. "Intergenerationelle Einkommensmobilität: Schlusslicht Deutschland?," ifo Schnelldienst, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 71(20), pages 20-28, October.
    11. Arnaud Lefranc & Fumiaki Ojima & Takashi Yoshida, 2014. "Intergenerational earnings mobility in Japan among sons and daughters: levels and trends," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 27(1), pages 91-134, January.
    12. Nathalie Chusseau & Joël Hellier & B. Ben-Halima, 2013. "Education, Intergenerational Mobility and Inequality," Palgrave Macmillan Books, in: Joël Hellier & Nathalie Chusseau (ed.), Growing Income Inequalities, chapter 8, pages 227-273, Palgrave Macmillan.
    13. Michelle M. Miller & Frank McIntyre, 2020. "Does Money Matter for Intergenerational Income Transmission?," Southern Economic Journal, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 86(3), pages 941-970, January.
    14. Anna Christina D'Addio, 2007. "Intergenerational Transmission of Disadvantage: Mobility or Immobility Across Generations?," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 52, OECD Publishing.
    15. Julia Bredtmann & Nina Smith, 2018. "Inequalities in Educational Outcomes: How Important Is the Family?," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 80(6), pages 1117-1144, December.
    16. Cobb-Clark, Deborah A. & Dahmann, Sarah C. & Salamanca, Nicolás & Zhu, Anna, 2017. "Intergenerational Disadvantage: Learning about Equal Opportunity from Social Assistance Receipt," IZA Discussion Papers 11070, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    17. Piraino, Patrizio, 2015. "Intergenerational Earnings Mobility and Equality of Opportunity in South Africa," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 396-405.
    18. Silke Anger & Daniel D. Schnitzlein, 2017. "Cognitive skills, non-cognitive skills, and family background: evidence from sibling correlations," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 30(2), pages 591-620, April.
    19. Jantti, Markus & Bratsberg, Bernt & Roed, Knut & Raaum, Oddbjorn & Naylor, Robin & Osterbacka, Eva & Bjorklund, Anders & Eriksson, Tor, 2005. "American exceptionalism in a new light: a comparison of intergenerational earnings mobility in the Nordic countries, the United Kingdom and the United States," Economic Research Papers 269752, University of Warwick - Department of Economics.
    20. Björklund, Anders & Jäntti, Markus & Lindquist, Matthew J., 2009. "Family background and income during the rise of the welfare state: Brother correlations in income for Swedish men born 1932-1968," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(5-6), pages 671-680, June.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    intergenerational mobility; persistence; social mobility; inequality; genealogical; Cape Colony;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J62 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Job, Occupational and Intergenerational Mobility; Promotion
    • N37 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Africa; Oceania

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sza:wpaper:wpapers190. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/desunza.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Melt van Schoor (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/desunza.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.