Men. Roots and Consequences of Masculinity Norms

56 Pages Posted: 12 Oct 2018 Last revised: 28 May 2021

See all articles by Victoria Baranov

Victoria Baranov

University of Melbourne

Ralph De Haas

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); Tilburg University - Department of Finance

Pauline A. Grosjean

UNSW Business School, School of Economics

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Date Written: April 22, 2021

Abstract

We document the historical roots and contemporary consequences of masculinity norms: beliefs about the proper conduct of men. We exploit a natural experiment in which convict transportation in the 18th and 19th centuries created a variegated spatial pattern of sex ratios across Australia. Areas that were heavily male-biased in the past (though not the present) remain characterized by more violence, higher rates of male suicide and other forms of preventable male mortality, and more male-stereotypical occupational segregation. Further evidence indicates that in these historically male-biased areas, more Australians recently voted against same-sex marriage and that boys—but not girls—are more likely to be bullied in school. We interpret these results as manifestations of masculinity norms that emerged due to intense local male-male competition and that are distinct from traditional gender norms about women. Once established, masculinity norms have persisted over time through family socialization as well as peer socialization in schools.

Keywords: Masculinity, sex ratio, natural experiment, cultural persistence

JEL Classification: I31, J12, J16, N37, O10, Z13

Suggested Citation

Baranov, Victoria and De Haas, Ralph and Grosjean, Pauline A., Men. Roots and Consequences of Masculinity Norms (April 22, 2021). UNSW Business School Research Paper, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3185694 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3185694

Victoria Baranov

University of Melbourne

Ralph De Haas (Contact Author)

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development ( email )

One Exchange Square
London, EC2A 2JN
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: www.ebrd.com

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) ( email )

London
United Kingdom

Tilburg University - Department of Finance ( email )

P.O. Box 90153
Tilburg, 5000 LE
Netherlands

Pauline A. Grosjean

UNSW Business School, School of Economics ( email )

High Street
Sydney, NSW 2052
Australia

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