Discouraging Times: The Labor Force Participation of Married Black Women, 1930-1940
William A. Sundstrom
Santa Clara University - Leavey School of Business - Economics Department
Explorations in Economic History, Vol. 38, 2001
The extraordinary unemployment rates of black women during the Great Depression caused a sizeable number to leave the labor force as "discouraged workers." Consequently, while married white women entered the labor force in increasing numbers, the participation rate of married black women stagnated. The higher unemployment of black women was not primarily a function of their occupational or industrial distribution, but reflected unequal treatment within markets. This article adds support to the view of black economic progress as episodic in nature, with the Depression as a period of relative retrenchment for African Americans.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 24Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: March 9, 2008
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