NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Publications by Yueran Ma

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Working Papers and Chapters

December 2013The Supply of Gender Stereotypes and Discriminatory Beliefs
with Edward L. Glaeser
in Human Capital in History: The American Record, Leah P. Boustan, Carola Frydman, and Robert A. Margo, editors
What determines beliefs about the ability and appropriate role of women? An overwhelming majority of men and women born early in the twentieth century thought women should not work; a majority now believes that work is appropriate for both genders. To explain this change, we present a model where parents perpetuate beliefs out of a desire to encourage the production of grandchildren. Undersupply of female education will encourage daughters’ fertility, directly by reducing the opportunity cost of their time and indirectly by leading daughters to believe that they are less capable. Children will be particularly susceptible to persuasion if they overestimate their parents’ altruism towards themselves. The supply of persuasion will diminish if women work before child-bearing, which may explain...
June 2013The Supply of Gender Stereotypes and Discriminatory Beliefs
with Edward L. Glaeser: w19109
What determines beliefs about the ability and appropriate role of women? An overwhelming majority of men and women born early in the 20th century thought women should not work; a majority now believes that work is appropriate for both genders. Betty Friedan (1963) postulated that beliefs about gender were formed by consumer good producers, but a simple model suggests that such firms would only have the incentive to supply error, when mass persuasion is cheap, when their products complement women’s time in the household, and when individual producers have significant market power. Such conditions seem unlikely to be universal, or even common, but gender stereotypes have a long history. To explain that history, we turn to a second model where parents perpetuate beliefs out of a desire to...

Forthcoming: The Supply of Gender Stereotypes and Discriminatory Beliefs, Edward L. Glaeser, Yueran Ma. in Human Capital in History: The American Record, Boustan, Frydman, and Margo. 2014

Contact and additional information for this authorAll NBER papers and publicationsNBER Working Papers only

 
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