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Thomas Robert Malthus (1766-1834) was an English cleric whose ideas, as expounded in his most famous work the Essay on the Principle of Population, caused a storm of controversy. In this Very Short Introduction, Donald Winch explains and clarifies Malthus's ideas, assessing the profound influence he has had on modern economic thought. Concentrating on his writings, Winch sheds light on the context in which he wrote and why his work has remained controversial. Looking at Malthus's early life as well as the evolution of his theories from population to political economy, Winch considers why and how Malthus's writings have been so influential in the thought of later figures such as Darwin and Keynes. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements ; 1. Reputation ; 2. Life ; 3. Population: the first Essay ; 4. Population: the second Essay ; 5. From population to political economy ; 6. The political economy of stable growth ; 7. Conclusion ; References ; Further reading

About the Author

Donald Winch is Emeritus Professor of Intellectual History at the University of Sussex. His previous publications include studies of classical political economy, the relationship of economics and policy during the twentieth century, including Adam Smith's Politics (1978), (with Stefan Collini and John Burrow) That Noble Science of Politics (1983), and Riches and Poverty: An Intellectual History of Political Economy in Britain, 1750-1834 and Wealth and Life: Essays on the Intellectual History of Political Economy in Britain, 1848-1914.

Reviews

With population growth and food availability remaining major economic and social issues today, it is little wonder that Malthus ideas continue to resonate. This accessible and thorough clarification of his ideas is therefore as timely and relevant as ever. * Nicholas J. McMeniman, Australian Commonwealth Government, Political Studies Review *

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