The Effects of Sexism on American Women: The Role of Norms vs. Discrimination

56 Pages Posted: 22 Aug 2018 Last revised: 19 Jul 2021

See all articles by Kerwin Kofi Charles

Kerwin Kofi Charles

University of Chicago - Harris School of Public Policy

Jonathan Guryan

Northwestern University - Human Development and Social Policy (HDSP) Program; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Jessica Pan

National University of Singapore (NUS)

Date Written: August 2018

Abstract

We study how reported sexism in the population affects American women. Fixed-effects and TSLS estimates show that higher prevailing sexism where she was born (background sexism) and where she currently lives (residential sexism) both lower a woman's wages, labor force participation and ages of marriage and childbearing. We argue that background sexism affects outcomes through the influence of previously-encountered norms, and that estimated associations regarding specific percentiles and male versus female sexism suggest that residential sexism affects labor market outcomes through prejudice-based discrimination by men, and non-labor market outcomes through the influence of current norms of other women.

Suggested Citation

Charles, Kerwin Kofi and Guryan, Jonathan and Pan, Jessica, The Effects of Sexism on American Women: The Role of Norms vs. Discrimination (August 2018). NBER Working Paper No. w24904, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3236707

Kerwin Kofi Charles (Contact Author)

University of Chicago - Harris School of Public Policy ( email )

1155 East 60th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
(773) 834-8922 (Phone)

Jonathan Guryan

Northwestern University - Human Development and Social Policy (HDSP) Program ( email )

2046 Sheridan Road
Evanston, IL 60208
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Jessica Pan

National University of Singapore (NUS) ( email )

1E Kent Ridge Road
NUHS Tower Block Level 7
Singapore, 119228
Singapore

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