Malthus, Thomas Robert


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Encyclopedia.

Malthus, Thomas Robert

(1766–1834) English political economist whose ideas on population growth influenced the evolutionary theory propagated by Charles DARWIN and Alfred WALLACE. His most interesting observation was that, if unchecked, the human population would grow geometrically whilst the food supply would grow only arithmetically, thus giving rise to mass starvation. He considered that the only checks on population growth were disease, war, famine and abstinence from sex, the latter being the most reliable method of BIRTH CONTROL at the time.
Mentioned in ?