Men: Roots and Consequences of Masculinity Norms

55 Pages Posted: 25 Mar 2020

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

Date Written: March 2020

Abstract

Recent research has uncovered the historical roots of gender norms about women and the persistent impact of such norms on economic behavior. We document similar roots and consequences of masculinity norms: beliefs about the proper conduct of men. We exploit a natural historical experiment in which convict transportation in the 18th and 19th century created a variegated spatial pattern of sex ratios across Australia. We show that 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 persisted over time through peer socialization in schools.

Keywords: Cultural persistence, identity, Masculinity, Natural Experiment, Sex ratio

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

Suggested Citation

Baranov, Victoria and De Haas, Ralph and Grosjean, Pauline A., Men: Roots and Consequences of Masculinity Norms (March 2020). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP14493, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3560300

Victoria Baranov (Contact Author)

University of Melbourne

Ralph De Haas

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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