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Population pressure

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Population pressure  (POPULATION pressure)

The term population pressure1 is used in a number of different senses. According to the Malthusian population theory2 (101-4), so called after its originator, there will inevitably be pressure of population on the means of subsistence3. Any change in the volume of available means of subsistence would generate population growth (701-1) until population equilibrium4 would again be attained when the level of living had reached a subsistence level5, i. e., a level just sufficient to maintain life. The equilibrium would be maintained by the elimination of any surplus population either through positive checks6, sometimes known as Malthusian checks6 (famine, pestilence and war), or through the preventive check7 of moral restraint8 consisting of postponement of marriage9, coupled with abstinence from sexual relations before marriage.

  • 7. The term preventive check in English is generally used only with reference to the doctrines of Malthus.