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Bauernschuster, Stefan and Rainer, Helmut (2011): Political regimes and the family: How sex-role attitudes continue to differ in reunified Germany. In: Journal of Population Economics, Vol. 25, No. 1: pp. 5-27

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We exploit the German separation and later reunification to investigate whether political regimes can shape attitudes about appropriate roles for women in the family and the labor market. During the divided years, East German institutions encouraged female employment, while the West German system deterred women, in particular mothers, from full-time employment. Our results show that East Germans are significantly more likely to hold egalitarian sex-role attitudes than West Germans. Despite a scenario of partial policy convergence after reunification, we find no evidence for a convergence process in gender attitudes. Indeed, if anything, the gap in attitudes rather increased.

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