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The long Term Effects of the Printing Press in Sub Saharan Africa

Abstract : This article delves into the relationship between newspaper readership and civic attitudes, and its e↵ect on economic development. To this end, we investigate the long-term consequences of the introduction of the printing press in the 19th century. In sub-Saharan Africa, Protestant missionaries were the first both to import the printing press technology and to allow the indigenous population to use it. We build a new geocoded dataset locating Protestant missions in 1903. This dataset includes, for each mission station, the geographic location and its characteristics, as well as the educational and health-related investments undertaken by the mission. We show that, within regions located close to missions, proximity to a printing press significantly increases newspaper readership today. We also document a strong association between proximity to a printing press and contemporary economic development. Our results are robust to a variety of identification strategies.
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https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-00844446
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Submitted on : Tuesday, May 13, 2014 - 1:01:09 PM
Last modification on : Friday, April 29, 2022 - 10:13:02 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Monday, April 10, 2017 - 9:56:54 PM

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  • HAL Id : halshs-00844446, version 2

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Julia Cage, Valeria Rueda. The long Term Effects of the Printing Press in Sub Saharan Africa. 2013. ⟨halshs-00844446v2⟩

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