The Intergenerational Transmission of Historical Conflicts: An Application to China's Trade

54 Pages Posted: 20 Jun 2018 Last revised: 26 May 2021

See all articles by Difei Ouyang

Difei Ouyang

University of Geneva - Geneva School of Economics and Management

Weidi Yuan

University of Geneva - Geneva School of Economics and Management

Date Written: November 20, 2020

Abstract

We study the legacy effect and transmission mechanisms of historical conflict on contemporary trade. Using new data on the regional dispersion of civilian deaths due to massacres in the Sino-Japanese war (1931-45), we find that local conflict intensity predicts international trade patterns of Chinese corporations three generations later. We further explore the transmission mechanism of collective war memory. Conflict intensity correlates with measures of anti-Japanese sentiments inferred from survey data and it appears to be transmitted both through war dramas in the mass media as well as official commemorations. We also find evidence that the trade-inhibiting effect increases with the time exposed to local war memory.

Keywords: Historical conflicts, trade, war memory

JEL Classification: F14, F51, J11, N45, Z13

Suggested Citation

Ouyang, Difei and Yuan, Weidi, The Intergenerational Transmission of Historical Conflicts: An Application to China's Trade (November 20, 2020). Journal of Comparative Economics, Forthcoming, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3188307 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3188307

Difei Ouyang

University of Geneva - Geneva School of Economics and Management ( email )

Bd du Pont d'Arve 42
Genève, GA CH - 1211
Switzerland
+41789451656 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://sites.google.com/site/ouyangdifei/research

Weidi Yuan (Contact Author)

University of Geneva - Geneva School of Economics and Management ( email )

Uni Mail
Bd du Pont-d'Arve 40
Geneva, 1211
Switzerland

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