Australian Health & Human Capital Economics Seminar| The Intergenerational Legacy of Indian Residential Schools by Maggie Jones
Welcome back to the Virtual Australian Health & Human Capital Economics Seminar Series, which goes into its second year. This event is organised by A/Professor Victoria Baranov (UMelb), Dr Sarah Walker (UNSW), Professor Stefanie Schurer (USyd), Dr Rebecca McKibbin (USyd), Professor Adeline Delavande (UTS), and Professor Brenda Gannon (UQ).
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The Intergenerational Legacy of Indian Residential Schools
Abstract: From the late nineteenth century until the end of the twentieth century, colonial governments in the United States, Canada, Greenland, Australia, and New Zealand, operated, in collaboration with Christian churches, a network of boarding schools for Indigenous children. The purpose of this system was to culturally and economically assimilate; Indigenous children were taken from their families and placed into residential schools where they were to be converted into the Eurocentric culture of the dominant society. Using a unique restricted-access database from Canada that asked Indigenous respondents about their family history with residential schools, in addition to questions on a variety of socioeconomic outcomes, I study the intergenerational effects of these schools. Despite previous research showing that residential schools led to increased human capital accumulation among those who attended, I find that residential schools are associated with lower educational attainment among subsequent generations. I present evidence consistent with the notion that both cultural detachment and a breakdown in family relationships contributed to a reversal of the standard relationship between the human capital of parents and children. Encouragingly, I find that cultural interventions may provide a buffer to the harmful legacy of this historical trauma, suggesting an avenue for the direction of future policy.
For further information regarding this seminar and Virtual Australian Health & Human Capital Economics Seminar Series, please contact Professor Stefanie Schurer (firstname.lastname@example.org)