Author: Thomas Robert Malthus, political economist in England, professor of East India Company College. Opponent of optimistic enlightenment opinions. His father is Rousseau’s friend.
Context: Essay on Population was published at late 18th century, England was almost finished the first industrial revolution. Population growed tremendously because of the development of medical technology which decreased the death rate and the increase of food supply by more efficient farming methods and machines. At that time, most of economists believe that population growth has positive effect to economy.
Language: The author deduced his opinion based on the population growth during the 18th century by mathmatic method. He believe that the population growth rate is exponential increasing and food supply rate is liner increasing. So the increasing of population will cause starvation. His method is basically right, but his data only include the 18th century Europe(or England), he didn’t foresee that the population slow down and the food supply increased faster than liner by new technology.
Audience: Congress, Malthus believe the lower class should be responsible for the population growth and government should limit the population growth. His essay influenced the legislation at 1830s.
Intent: To conclude the population surplus theory for remind the government to control the population growth.
Message: the food supply increasing rate is much more slower than the population growth rate, the growth of population will decrease the productivity. So it’s necessary to control the population growth.