Principle Of Population Analysis

989 Words4 Pages
Jeremy Gerringer
Dr. Young
History of Economic Thought
14 March 2018

Principle of population

William Godwin's, An Inquiry Concerning Political Justice, influenced Malthus to write his book, "Essay on the Principle of Population". In the book, Malthus discusses his concern for the world population. For an economy to well-main itself, it must constantly check itself against the population. Agriculture is another important factor that Malthus discusses in his essay. He goes on to examine the relationship between world population and the world food supply. Nations want to create a standard of living above subsistence, not just achieve the bare minimum of maintaining itself. The rest of this essay examines Malthus' findings on the relationship
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As he was a mathematician, Malthus found that population increases in a geometric ratio and subsistence increases in an arithmetic ratio (12-13), which "… implies a strong and constantly operating check on population from the difficulty of subsistence (13). If the population doubles every 25 years, but food only grows every year, terrifying issue regarding subsistence could result. As the abundance of food increases in a nation, larger families will begin to spur as parents produce more offspring. According to Malthus, the standard of living for the people will never be able to permanently rise. A rise in the population would increase the demand for the extra food, and thus the nation's food supply will diminish. Population that are growing will add workers to the labor force, causing wages to spike. Now with decreases in household income, families will become both starving and poor. Prices of food will rise, and only the few rich, who have smaller families, will be able to afford the food. Fortunately due to the demographic transition phenomena that as people got richer, families got smaller, it is unlikely that Malthus' prediction of doom will ever occur (The Economist 2012). Furthermore, Malthus' mistaken forecast of world doom earned the discipline of economics the 'dismal science'…show more content…
First are positive checks to the population. Disease, war, and famine are examples of positive checks to the population. From the examples provided, we can interpret the following: positive checks to the population are those that naturally create a fall in world population, innately generating a food supply to feed all that are living. Second are preventative checks to the population. Preventative checks maintain the population by choices of the people. Example of such checks are sexual vice, delayed marriage, contraception within marriage, and abortion. If these checks do not hold and properly maintain the population as they are supposed to, people will begin to fall into the Malthusian trap. Malthus believed the laboring poor were in the Malthusian trap, and that this did not happen among the rich. His theory was that the rich traded luxury consumption for children. More luxury goods can be consumed in a smaller family, Instead of spending surplus money on children, it can be managed more efficiently to supply one's own
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