DP8589 | Race v. Suffrage: The Determinants of Development in Mississippi

Publication Date

01/10/2011

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Abstract

We investigate the long term determinants of political and economic outcomes over a new data set composed of Mississippi counties. We analyze the effect of disfranchisement on voting registration at the end of the nineteenth century (1896-9), as well as the impact of voting registration on education outcomes at different points in time, namely in 1917 and in the 1950s. Finally, we turn to the determinants of a broad array of development indicators for the year 1960 and for the 1960-2000 period. Our main conclusion is that race, rather than political institutions and education policies, is the main force driving the above outcomes.