IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/zur/econwp/147.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Bowling for fascism: social capital and the rise of the Nazi Party

Author

Listed:
  • Shanker Satyanath
  • Nico Voigtländer
  • Hans-Joachim Voth

Abstract

Social capital is often associated with desirable political and economic outcomes. This paper contributes to a growing literature on its "dark side". We examine the role of social capital in the downfall of democracy in interwar Germany. We analyze Nazi Party entry in a cross-section of cities, and show that dense networks of civic associations such as bowling clubs, choirs, and animal breeders went hand-in-hand with a rapid rise of the Nazi Party. Towns with one standard deviation higher association density saw at least one-third faster entry. All types of associations – veteran associations and non-military clubs, “bridging” and “bonding” associations – positively predict NS Party entry. Party membership, in turn, predicts electoral success. These results suggest that social capital aided the rise of the Nazi movement that ultimately destroyed Germany’s first democracy. We also show that the effects of social capital were more important in the starting phase of the Nazi movement, and in towns less sympathetic to its message.

Suggested Citation

  • Shanker Satyanath & Nico Voigtländer & Hans-Joachim Voth, 2014. "Bowling for fascism: social capital and the rise of the Nazi Party," ECON - Working Papers 147, Department of Economics - University of Zurich.
  • Handle: RePEc:zur:econwp:147
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.econ.uzh.ch/static/wp/econwp147.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Bai, Jushan & Ng, Serena, 2010. "Instrumental Variable Estimation In A Data Rich Environment," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 26(6), pages 1577-1606, December.
    2. Winkelried, D. & Smith, R.J., 2011. "Principal Components Instrumental Variable Estimation," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1119, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Social capital; democracy; institutions; associations; networks;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • N34 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Europe: 1913-
    • N44 - Economic History - - Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation - - - Europe: 1913-
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism
    • Z10 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - General

    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:zur:econwp:147. 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: (Marita Kieser). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/seizhch.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 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.

    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.