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Thomas Malthus - Essay on Populations

Page history last edited by PBworks 14 years, 8 months ago

Kelsey Rector


Week 23: Emergence of Industrial Society IDs


Thomas Malthus -- Essay on Populations!!




  • (February 13, 1766 – December 23, 1834), Thomas Malthus, although he preferred to be known as "Robert Malthus", was an English demographer and political economist. He is best known for his pessimistic but highly influential views on population growth.


  • Malthus' views were largely developed in reaction to the optimistic views of his father and his associates, notably Rousseau. Malthus's essay was also in response to the views of the Marquis de Condorcet. In An Essay on the Principle of Population, first published in 1798, Malthus made the famous prediction that population would outrun food supply, leading to a decrease in food per person. He even went so far as to specifically predict that this must occur by the middle of the 19th century, a prediction which failed for several reasons, including his use of static analysis, taking recent trends and projecting them indefinitely into the future, which often fails for complex systems.


  • Malthus regarded his Principle of Population as an explanation of the past and the present situation of humanity as well as a prediction of our future.


  • Made an impact on future theologians, naturalists, economists, and the theory of universal contraceptives.  Also influenced the idea of the S curve or logistic growth model. Moreover, he made a huge impact on Darwin's ideas.





Malthus.jpg  <----Click on it!!

**A Picture of Malthus





**The Essay on Populations



SOURCES:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Malthus, http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/history/malthus.html





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