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Capital WomenThe European Marriage Pattern, Female Empowerment and Economic Development in Western Europe 1300-1800$
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Jan Luiten van Zanden, Sarah Carmichael, and Tine De Moor

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190847883

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190847883.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 26 November 2020

The Broader Picture

The Broader Picture

Global Determinants of Female Agency and Economic Growth

(p.1) 1 The Broader Picture
Capital Women

Jan Luiten

Oxford University Press

This chapter introduces the concept of female agency and sets up the framework for the rest of the book. The authors explain how age at marriage can be an indicator of the degree of power a woman has in a relationship, as well as her role in society. This chapter argues that the European Marriage Pattern (free choice of marriage partner) played a fundamental role in the economic development of Western Europe, leading to the Industrial Revolution and a higher standard of living. The authors explore the contemporary situation, presenting correlations between marriage age and composite measures of gender equality, as well as zooming out to the global level to discuss differences in how women have fared in terms of human capital formation, access to the capital market, and participation in the labor market.

Keywords:   institutions, gender inequality, marriage age, economic development, fertility, human capital, female agency, European Marriage Pattern

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