题目： Parental Absence in Childhood and Migrants’Crime: Evidence from an Individual Prisoner Data in China
Past three decades witness dramatic change in family structure in China. Particularly, along with sheer scale of rural-urban migration, a large cohort of migrant children has been left-behind in rural villages and growing up without parental care. This paper examines whether parental absence in childhood is associated with criminality in China. Using a unique survey and experimental data from prison inmates and comparable non-inmates, we find that parental absence indeed increase the propensity to commit crimes. Father’s absence is more likely to induce son’s crime activities, while mother’s absence may impose an impact through reducing education attainment. Parental absence due to left-behind is associated with greater criminality, but parental absence due to other reasons would impose a stronger impact. We also find that parental absence due to left behind or other reasons may drive criminality through different channels. Being left-behind may arouse risk-loving behaviors and deteriorate moral values. Parental absence due to other reasons may reduce opportunity for education and cause poor personality formation.