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Unformatted text preview: Introduction to Sociology
Lecture 2: Population Growth
Wednesday, September 1 Early macrosociological concerns Population growth resource scarcity, prevalence and mechanisms for reducing it, present challenges Specialization and rationalization the division of labor, consequences for social solidarity, changes in order and hierarchy Capitalism and inequality the development of capitalism, problems associated with it (e.g., social stratification, conflict) Urbanization, segregation the movement of people from rural to urban areas, and the patterning of residence by social characteristics Malthusian theory
An Essay on the Principle of Population (1798) Main concern: resource scarcity Carrying capacity: the number of individuals in a given place capacity: that can be supported by its natural resource limits (i.e., without degrading the environment) The problem: Whereas population growth occurs at a problem: geometric rate, food production increases arithmetically Malthusian model of population growth Catastrophe
Population Size Carrying capacity TIME Labor surplus Labor wages decline Employers hire more workers Increased food supply Food prices decline Population growth Food scarcity Food prices increase Laborer poverty, starvation Decline in reproduction Population stagnation Social inequality Population control Mechanisms of population control
"Premature death must in some shape or other visit the human race."
"Positive" checks Famine Natural disaster Disease War Infanticide Murder Preventative checks Abstinence Contraception 7000 WORLD POPULATION (MILLIONS) (MILLIONS) 6000 5000 4000 3000 2000 1000 0 1750 1800 1850 1900 1950 2000 Me Malthus YEAR Criticisms of Malthus Implies that social inequality has long-term benefits for society long Ignores the role of subsistence technology in improving society's ability to produce and distribute food
Population growth prompts sociocultural evolution Huntergatherer Horticultural Agrarian Industrial Ignores the role of social organization for avoiding resource scarcity (e.g., division of labor, distribution, government) Overstates the disparity between rate of population growth and rate of resource production The demographic transition
30 DEATHS per 1,000 people, per year BIRTHS per 1,000 people, per year 25 20 15 10 Mortality rate Fertility rate 40 30 20 10 5 PHASE I 0 PHASE II PHASE III PHASE IV
0 Time Why the fertility decline? People calibrate their fertility decisions to mortality rates Kids are expensive in advanced societies People delay parenthood for the sake of formal education Contraceptive technology is better and more widely available ...
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