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Does inequality stifle Human capital accumulation : Evidence from Korea, 1909-66

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Title Does inequality stifle Human capital accumulation
Similar Titles
Sub Title

Evidence from Korea, 1909-66

Material Type Reports
Author(English)

Cha, Myung Soo

Publisher

Seoul:Naksungdae Institute of Economic Research

Date 2016
Series Title; No Working Paper Series / 2016-02
Pages 37
Subject Country South Korea(Asia and Pacific)
Language English
File Type Documents
Original Format pdf
Subject Social Development
Social Development < Population
Holding Naksungdae Institute of Economic Research

Abstract

Using evidence on elite presence, land inequality, literacy, and primary schooling in dynastic, colonial, and South Korea, I show that inequality may help or check human capital accumulation depending on the nature of inequality and on the type of learning. Little affected by the imposition of Japanese rule, structural inequality based on pre-colonial social order and landlordism stifled literacy in colonial Korea. Market-driven inequality caused by economic growth under Japanese rule however promoted literacy. Both types of inequality checked primary schooling, except that traditional inequality encouraged donation for schooling building. The post-colonial demise of land tenancy advanced literacy by destroying the pre-colonial social order based on landlordism, rather than by improving income inequality.