Jacob Vigdor

The new promised land: Black-white convergence in the American South, 1940-2000

The black-white earnings gap has historically been larger in the South than in other regions of the United States. This paper shows that this regional gap has closed over time, and in fact reversed during the last decades of the twentieth century. Three proposed explanations for this trend focus on changing patterns of selective migration, reduced discrimination in Southern labor markets, and lower levels of school segregation and school resource disparities in the modern South relative to the North.