{[ promptMessage ]}

Bookmark it

{[ promptMessage ]}

Lecture 17 - Poverty

Lecture 17 - Poverty - Lecture17:Poverty , ,,andif...

Info icon This preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Lecture 17:  Poverty The question for today is whether poverty, especially poverty in the extreme sense of  having or not having enough to eat, is increasing or decreasing in the age of globalization, and if  it’s decreasing, why it continues to exist at all.   First, it’s clear that the world as a whole is getting richer, both in terms of absolute  wealth and terms of average wealth per person.  One measure of poverty is whether you are able  to provide yourself with enough food.  On average, there is more food per person that there was a  century ago.  While the population of the world almost doubled between the early 1960s and  1999, the amount of food increased by two and a half times, with the result that the price of food  has been falling all over the world.  What is more, total wealth has been growing faster than both  population and food supply, so that diet quality is improving, with more proteins and vegetables  and fewer starches and staples part of the average diet.  While the population doubled and the  amount of food increased by 2  ½  times, the amount of pork has sextupled and the amount of  chicken dectupled.  In short, the fear that the population explosion would result in mass starvation  has been disproved.  There simply is no issue about our ability to grow enough food to feed all  the people in the world.   Meanwhile, the proportion of the budget spent on food is decreasing all over the world,  with levels never before seen of 12 to 15 percent spent in North America, a figure that includes a  lot of discretionary spending–eating in restaurants and so forth.  Perhaps more significantly,  moving the percentage of family income spent of food from 80 to 60 percent in a poor Latin  American or South Asian household represents a huge increase in welfare for that household, in  terms of clothing, medicine, education, you name it, since it means that the amount of non-food  purchases has increased from 20 to 40 percent–in other words, it’s doubled.   As the amount that has to be spent on food has decreased, the amount available for other  necessities like clothing and shelter has increased; meanwhile, because of mass production, the  cost of clothing has fallen drastically.  100 years ago most people didn’t have more than one  change of clothes; and as for shelter, houses are larger and much better equipped than 100 years  ago.  We can go on and on, but the point is that the world is much wealthier, and in fact much  more than four times wealthier, than 100 years ago.  
Image of page 1

Info icon This preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

{[ snackBarMessage ]}

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern