Thomas Malthus Theory of Population

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Thomas Malthus Theory of Population

By | June 2012
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Thomas Robert Malthus was a British economist, whose famous Theory of Population highlighted the potential dangers of overpopulation. In his famous An Essay on the Principles of Population, Malthus shows as that: 'the populations of the world would increase in geometric proportions the food resources available for them would increase only in arithmetic proportions'.
In simple words, human population can increase at a faster rate than the food supply. Agriculture has diminishing returns. Therefore, in a productive process, as the agrarian, where is needed to add more of one factor of production, at some point yield lower per-unit returns, whereas, population has an exponential growth. This situation leads to future where humans would reach the situation where the food sources could not support everyone. The lack of food causes hunger, disease and war. This were, for Malthus, the positive checks. Methods that raise the death rate. To avoid such a catastrophe, Malthus urged some controls on population growth before reaching the food shortage. He called them: Preventative checks.

Preventative checks where methods to control population based on birth rate control, and uses of different ways to applied them. One of his ideas was marry later in life than had been usual to do, only at a stage when fully people were capable of supporting their family. This method would give rise to smaller families and probably to fewer once, but Malthus was strongly opposed to birth control within marriage and did not suggest that parents should try to restrict the number of children born to them after their marriage. Malthus was clearly aware that problems might arise from the postponement of marriage to a later date, such as an increase in the number of illegitimate births, but he considered that these problems were likely less serious than those caused by the rapid population growth.

Malthus view overpopulation as an evil thing, which would reduce the amount of food...