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The Reluctant Transformation: State Industrialization, Religion, and Human Capital in Nineteenth-Century Egypt

Mohamed Saleh ()

The Journal of Economic History, 2015, vol. 75, issue 1, 65-94

Abstract: In 1805–1882, Egypt embarked on one of the earliest state industrialization programs. Using a new data source, the Egyptian nineteenth-century population censuses, I examine the impact of the program on the long-standing inter-religious human capital differentials, which were in favor of Christians. I find that there were inter-religious differentials in reaping the benefits (or losses) of industrialization. The first state industrialization wave was “de-skilling†among Muslims but “up-skilling†among Christians, while the second wave was “up-skilling†for both groups. I interpret the results within Lawrence F. Katz and Robert A. Margo (2013) framework of technical change.

Date: 2015
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