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The Law of Population and the Austrian School

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  • Stephen P. Barrows

Abstract

There has been considerable debate within the social sciences about the consequences of rapid population growth. The law of population, as described by Thomas Robert Malthus, asserts that population growth is ultimately limited by the means of subsistence, and therefore preventive checks on population growth (e.g., voluntarily limiting the number of births) are necessary to avoid the grim prospect of inevitable human suffering when the means of subsistence cannot support the population. Economists, demographers, and other social scientists have produced volumes of exegesis on Malthus's work. This article assesses how representative economists of the Austrian School have interacted with Malthus's law of population. Copyright © 2010 American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Inc..

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  • Stephen P. Barrows, 2010. "The Law of Population and the Austrian School," American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 69(4), pages 1178-1205, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ajecsc:v:69:y:2010:i:4:p:1178-1205
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