Dalton, John T. and Leung, Tin Cheuk (2011): Why is Polygyny More Prevalent in Western Africa?: An African Slave Trade Perspective.
Download (828Kb) | Preview
Polygyny rates are higher in Western Africa than in Eastern Africa. The African slave trades explain this difference. More male slaves were exported in the trans-Atlantic slave trades from Western Africa, while more female slaves were exported in the Indian Ocean and Red Sea slave trades from Eastern Africa. The slave trades led to prolonged periods of abnormal sex ratios, which impacted the rates of polygyny across Africa. In order to assess these claims, we construct a unique ethnicity-level data set linking current rates of polygyny with historical trade flow data from the African slave trades. Our OLS estimates show a positive correlation between the trans-Atlantic slave trades and polygyny. An IV approach shows the relationship is causal and statistically signicant. We also provide cross-country evidence corroborating our findings.
|Item Type:||MPRA Paper|
|Original Title:||Why is Polygyny More Prevalent in Western Africa?: An African Slave Trade Perspective|
|Keywords:||slave trades; polygyny; Africa; development|
|Subjects:||O - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth > O5 - Economywide Country Studies > O55 - Africa
F - International Economics > F1 - Trade > F14 - Empirical Studies of Trade
J - Labor and Demographic Economics > J1 - Demographic Economics > J12 - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure; Domestic Abuse
N - Economic History > N1 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations > N17 - Africa; Oceania
|Depositing User:||Unnamed user with email firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Date Deposited:||07. Aug 2011 04:02|
|Last Modified:||12. Feb 2013 04:10|
Becker, G. S. (1974): "A Theory of Marriage: Part II," Journal of Political Economy, 82(2), S11-S26.
Beckford, W. (1788): Remarks Upon the Situation of Negroes in Jamaica: Impartially Made form a Local Experience of Nearly Thirteen Years in that Island. London.
Bisin, A., and T. Verdier (2000): "Beyond the Melting Pot": Cultural Transmission, Marriage, and the Evolution of Ethnic and Religious Traits," Quarterly Journal of Economics, 115(3), 955-988.
Bisin, A., and T. Verdier (2001): "The Economics of Cultural Transmission and the Dynamics of Preferences," Journal of Economic Theory, 97(2), 298-319.
Clignet, R. (1970): Many Wives, Many Powers: Authority and Power in Polygynous Families. Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press.
Demographic and Health Surveys (2011): www.measuredhs.com, accessed April 2011.
Dorjahn, V. R. (1954): "The Demographic Aspects of African Polygyny," Ph.D. thesis Northwestern University, Evanston, IL.
Edwards, B. (1801): The History, Civil and Commercial, of the British Colonies in the West Indies. London.
Eltis, D., and S. L. Engerman (2000): "The Importance of Slavery and the Slave Trade to Industrializing Britain," Journal of Economic History, 60(1), 123-144.
Eltis, D., F. D. Lewis, and K. McIntyre (2010): "Accounting for the Traffic in Africans: Transport Costs on Slaving Voyages," Journal of Economic History, 70(4), 940-963.
Eltis, D., F. D. Lewis, and D. Richardson (2005): "Slave Prices, the African Slave Trade, and Productivity in the Caribbean, 1674-1807," Economic History Review, LVIII(4), 673-700.
Eltis, D., and D. Richardson (1995): "Productivity in the Transatlantic Slave Trade," Explorations in Economic History, 32, 465-484.
Eltis, D., and D. Richardson (2010): Atlas of the Transatlantic Slave Trade. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.
Gould, E. D., O. Moav, and A. Simhon (2008): "The Mystery of Monogamy," American Economic Review, 98(1), 333-357.
Grossbard, A. (1978): "Towards a Marriage between Economics and Anthropology and a General Theory of Marriage," American Economic Review, 68(2), 33-37.
Harris, J. E. (1971): The African Presence in Asia: Consequences of the East African Slave Trade. Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press.
Hogerzeil, S. J., and D. Richardson (2007): "Slave Purchasing Strategies and Shipboard Mortality: Day-to-Day Evidence from the Dutch African Trade, 1751-1797," Journal of Economic History, 67(1), 160-190.
Jacoby, H. G. (1995): "The Economics of Polygyny in Sub-Saharan Africa: Female Productivity and the Demand for Wives in Cote d'Ivoire," Journal of Political Economy, 103(5), 938-971.
Lewis, B. (1990): Race and Slavery in the Middle East: An Historical Enquiry. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
Lovejoy, P. E. (1983): Transformations in Slavery: A History of Slavery in Africa. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
Manning, P. (1990): Slavery and African Life: Occidental, Oriental, and African Slave Trades. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
Murdock, G. P. (1959): Africa: Its Peoples and Their Cultural History. New York: McGraw-Hill Book Company.
Nunn, N. (2008): "The Long-Term Eects of Africa's Slave Trades," Quarterly Journal of Economics, 128(1), 139-176.
Nunn, N., and L. Wantchekon (2010): "The Slave Trade and the Origins of Mistrust in Africa," American Economic Review, forthcoming.
Phillips, W. D. (1985): Slavery From Roman Times to the Early Transatlantic Trade. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press.
Schoellman, T., and M. Tertilt (2006): "Marriage Laws and Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa," American Economic Review, 96(2), 295-298.
Tertilt, M. (2005): "Polygyny, Fertility, and Savings," Journal of Political Economy, 113(6), 1341-1371.
Tertilt, M. (2006): "Polygyny, Women's Rights, and Development," Journal of European Economic Association, 4(23), 523-530.
White, D. R., and M. L. Burton (1988): "Causes of Polygyny: Ecology, Economy, Kinship, and Warfare," American Anthropologist, 90(4), 871-887.