Jeremy Greenwood and
Nezih Guner ()
No 79, 2006 Meeting Papers from Society for Economic Dynamics
Social norms are influenced by the technological environment that a society faces. Behavioral modes reflect purposive decision making by individuals, given the environment they live in. Thus, as technology changes, so might social norms. There were big changes in social norms during the 20th century, especially in sexual mores. In 1900 only six percent of unwed women engaged in premarital sex. Now, three quarters do. It is argued here that this was the result of technological improvement in contraceptives, which lowered the cost of premarital sex. The evolution from an abstinent to a promiscuous society is studied using an equilibrium matching model
Keywords: Social change; the sexual revolution; technological progress in contraceptives, bilateral search. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: E1 J1 O3 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
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Working Paper: Social Change (2008)
Working Paper: Social Change (2007)
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