The Deep Roots of Rebellion: Evidence from the Irish Revolution

Gaia Narciso, Battista Severgnini

Publikation: Working paperForskning


This paper studies how cultural norms shaped by negative historical shocks can explain conflicts in the long-run. Exploiting a unique dataset constructed from historical archives, we test whether the Irish Famine (1845-1850), one of the most lethal starvation in history, changed political attitudes and contributed to the Irish Revolution (1913-1921). First, we investigate the determinants of joining the rebellion movement on the basis of the 1911 Irish Census and the official lists of rebels. We find that rebels are more likely to be male, young, catholic and literate. Second, we explore whether the famine played a role in the probability of joining rebellion activities. Controlling for the level of economic development and other potential concurring factors, we provide evidence of the role of the great Irish famine as an exceptional legacy of rebellion during the movement of independence.
UdgiverDepartment of Economics. Trinity College Dublin
Antal sider36
StatusUdgivet - 2017
NavnTrinity Economics Papers
Vol/bindTEP Working Paper No. 2216


  • Conflict
  • Cultural values
  • Inter generational transmission
  • Great Famine
  • Irish revolution