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In recent years in demography there has been a growing discussion about the relationship between life expectancy and lifespan inequality. It appears that in the long run this relationship tends to be strongly linear – countries with the longest life expectancy are also the most equal. This article takes a closer look at countries that went through long periods of life expectancy stagnation and shows that during those times they also experienced a reduction in inequality, mainly due to a large decrease in infant mortality. However, if only adult mortality is taken into account inequality was stagnating or even rising in many cases. Particularly interesting is the fact that a similar pattern of the relationship between life expectancy and lifespan inequality was observed both in Eastern or Western Europe.
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