The Intergenerational Transmission of World War I on Female Labor

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Demographic shocks tied to World War I’s high death toll induced many women to enter the labor force in the immediate postwar period. I document a positive impact of these newly employed women on the labor force participation of subsequent generations of women until today. I also find that the war permanently altered attitudes toward the role of women in the labor force. I decompose this impact into three channels of intergenerational transmission: transmission from mothers to daughters, transmission from mothers-in-law to daughters-in-law via their sons, and transmission through local social interactions.

The Economic Journal, 133(654), 2303-2333
Victor Gay
Victor Gay
Assistant Professor of Economics

Assistant professor at Toulouse School of Economics (TSE) and at the Institute for Advanced Study in Toulouse (IAST), University of Toulouse 1 Capitole.