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Evaluation of the ideas of Malthus on overpopulation.

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Lan Phuong Tran Eco. Geo (online) The Malthusians believe that overpopulation is the most severe crisis facing the world. It is the root cause of hunger, poverty, disease, and environmental destruction. On the contrary, the Anti-Malthusians argued that while overpopulation is a real worldwide problem, but is not a primary issue and population control should not be the first resolution. According to Elwell, author of Malthus' Social Theory, the Malthusians, by scapegoating the victims of global issues, are masking the real causes, among which is the devastating result of Western colonization, the global expansion of insatiable capitalism and governmental policy conflict in interests (2001). In 1798, social scientist, Reverend Thomas Robert Malthus, wrote Essay on the Principle of Population, summarized his famous dispute that while population "increases in a geometrical ratio," the sources for survival, mainly food, "increases only in an arithmetical ratio." Consequently, unless "population checks" such as famine, war, natural disasters or et cetera, to keep population growth down, he argued, the world would soon out run the food supply. ...read more.


Thus, an exceedingly inefficient use of land, water, and energy is used by farmers in poor countries dedicated millions of acres for land pasturing to raise cattle so that people in wealthy nations can purchase, however people in their own country can not afford to buy beef. As Nobel Prizing winning economist, Amarya Sen, argues through his book Hunger and Public Action, not because of a lack of food, but because they do not have the means to pay for it. Another dimension we might want to look at is the world wealth distribution. Stutz and Warf, University Professors of Geography, explained the reason behind the inequity of allocation of riches through the Core and Periphery model in their book The World Economy (2012). The theory is that as general prosperity grows globally, the majority of that growth is benefited by a "core" region of wealthy countries in spite of being severely outnumbered in population by those in a "periphery" that are ignored. ...read more.


It is a delicate balance. We want the developing countries to improve their economic situation and to improve their quality of life. This has been known to lower the birth rate. In addition, it advisable for the developed countries to consume less, perhaps this might lower the quality of life. We need to balance the quality of life between the rich and the poor, at the same time, hoping to balance the family size between the two classes. Resources: Elwell, Frank W., 2001. Malthus' Social Theory. Retrieved from http://www.faculty.rsu.edu/users/f/felwell/www/Theorists/Malthus/SocMalthus.htm Sen, Amarty and Dreze, Jean. Hunger and Public Action. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999. Malthus, Thomas. (1798). Essay on The Principle of Population. Retrieved from: http://www.esp.org/books/malthus/population/malthus.pdf Simon J.L. The ultimate resource. New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1981. Simon J.L. The ultimate resource II. New Jersey: Princeton University Press. 1996. Stutz, Frederick P., and Warf, Barney. The World Economy: Geography, Business, Development. 6th ed. New Jersey: Prentice Hall. Union of Concerned Scientists. (2012) The Most Harmful Consumer Activities. Retrieved from: http://www.overpopulation.org/solutions.html#Overconsumption 1 ...read more.

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