Malthus T. (1798) An Essay On Population

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Through his research, Darwin concluded that this ongoing struggle between those more and less fit to survive would produce a never-ending progression of changes in the organism.

In its simplest form, this is evolution through natural selection.

And one of the more famous not-so-optimistic people was Thomas Malthus, right over here. This is from his "Essay on the Principle of Population." "The power of population is so superior to the power of the earth to produce subsistence for man, that premature death must, in some shape or other, visit the human race." Very uplifting.

"The vices of mankind are active and able ministers of depopulation.

One of his influences was Thomas Robert Malthus, a late-eighteenth century economist.

Malthus wrote "Essay on the Principle of Population" (1798), which Darwin read and was inspired by.Prior to contemplating "Population," Darwin believed that populations grew until they were aligned with existing resources, and then stabilized.Thomas Malthus' work helped inspire Darwin to refine natural selection by stating a reason for meaningful competition between members of the same species.Darwin considered that some of the competitors in Malthus' perpetual struggle would be better equipped to survive.Those that were less able would die out, leaving only those with the more desirable traits.Darwin had many other sources from which he developed his theory.Yet, if evolution was the machine, and natural selection was the engine, then Malthus' perpetual struggle for resources was the fuel.So from his point of view, the way he saw it-- so let me on that axis-- let's say that that is the population, and that this axis right over here, let's say that that is time.So by his thinking-- and everything that he'd seen in reality up to that point would back this up-- that if people had enough food and time, they would reproduce, and they would reproduce in numbers that would grow the population.The central theme of Malthus' work was that population growth would always overpower food supply growth, creating perpetual states of hunger, disease, and struggle.The natural, ever-present struggle for survival caught the attention of Darwin, and he extended Malthus' principle to the evolutionary scheme.


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