A Documentary Reader on Population, Resources, and the Environment
- PUBLISHED: April 2022
- SUBJECT LISTING: Environmental Studies, History
- BIBLIOGRAPHIC INFORMATION: 278 Pages, 6 x 9 in
- SERIES: Weyerhaeuser Environmental Classics
- ISBN: 9780295749907
For centuries, thinking about the earth's increasing human population has been tied to environmental ideas and political action. This highly teachable collection of contextualized primary sources allows students to follow European and North American discussions about intertwined and evolving concepts of population, resources, and the natural environment from early contexts in the sixteenth century right through to the present day.
Edited and introduced by Robert J. Mayhew, a noted biographer of Thomas Robert Malthus—whose Essay on the Principle of Population (1798), excerpted here, is an influential and controversial take on the topic—this volume explores themes including evolution, eugenics, war, social justice, birth control, environmental Armageddon, and climate change. Other responses to the idea of new "population bombs" are represented here by radical feminist work, by Indigenous views of the population-environment nexus, and by intersectional race-gender approaches. By learning the patterns of this discourse, students will be better able to critically evaluate historical conversations as well as contemporary debates.
Authors & Contributors
Robert J. Mayhew is Fellow and Senior Tutor at Pembroke College, Cambridge and Honorary Professor of Historical Geography at the University of Bristol. He has published extensively on the history of Malthusian thought, including Malthus: The Life and Legacies of an Untimely Prophet (2014) and New Perspectives on Malthus (editor, 2016). He has also edited Malthus's selected works for Penguin Classics. He is a Fellow of the British Academy.
An erudite and stimulating work that addresses Malthus's neglected legacy within environmental history. Debating Malthus is the only sourcebook to provide a deeper historical approach with such a wide chronological scope.- Fredrik Albritton Jonsson, University of Chicago
A much-needed intellectual map of the enduring complex of population and resources, and a clear journey over difficult terrain.- Alison Bashford, University of New South Wales