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Published March 2016 | Published
Journal Article Open

Institutions, Demography, and Economic Growth


This article evaluates criticisms by Sarah G. Carmichael, Alexandra de Pleijt, Jan Luiten van Zanden, and Tine De Moor of our view of the European Marriage Pattern (EMP), and explains why their claims are incorrect. We elaborate our arguments concerning the institutional sources of economic growth, explore the relationship between women's position and the EMP, analyze the two-way links between demographic and economic behavior, and explicate aspects of our empirical analysis that these scholars find puzzling. The causes of European economic growth, we reiterate, are not to be found in the EMP but rather must be sought in the wider framework of nonfamilial institutions.

Additional Information

© 2016 Economic History Association. We would like to express our thanks to Jeremy Edwards for his exceptionally stimulating comments and suggestions.

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