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The “Eye of the Hurricane” Paradox: An Unexpected and Unequal Rise of Well-Being During the Covid-19 Lockdown in France

Abstract : Panel data covering the French population before and after the outbreak of the Covid-19 epidemic reveal that self-reported health and well-being have improved during the lockdown in comparison to previous years. We name this counterintuitive phenomenon the “eye of the hurricane” paradox: the large majority of individuals who are not infected by the virus may be seeing their current condition in a more positive light than they normally would. There are, however, divergences across social groups that reflect socioeconomic inequalities. In particular, blue-collar workers deviate from the prevailing trend as their level of self-reported health declines over the lockdown period, Parisian residents experience a sudden drop in their subjective well-being, and people working long hours at home exhibit higher levels of stress during the quarantine.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, April 21, 2021 - 8:22:43 AM
Last modification on : Friday, October 15, 2021 - 3:06:44 AM

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Ettore Recchi, Emanuele Ferragina, Emily Helmeid, Stefan Pauly, Mirna Safi, et al.. The “Eye of the Hurricane” Paradox: An Unexpected and Unequal Rise of Well-Being During the Covid-19 Lockdown in France. Research in Social Stratification and Mobility, Elsevier, 2020, 68, pp.100508 - 100512. ⟨10.1016/j.rssm.2020.100508⟩. ⟨hal-03203732⟩

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