One of the central beliefs of classical economic theory was that there is an inexorable tendency for population to press against the available natural resources, especially those providing the food supply. This doctrine, though not originating with him, was eloquently expressed by Thomas Robert Malthas (1766-1834) in an essay which first appeared in 1798. Malthus, a high-ranking graduate of Cambridge University, was a clergyman in the Church of England before he became a professor of history and political economy at the East India College, Haileybury, in 1805. This college had just been established by the British East India Company to train men for its service in Asia. Malthus, one of the first persons ever to hold a professorship in economics, continued in this post for the remainder of his life. [excerpt]
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Bloom, Robert L. et al. "7. Malthus and the Problem of Population. Pt XIV: The Industrial Revolution, Classical Economics, and Economic Liberalism." Ideas and Institutions of Western Man (Gettysburg College, 1958), 20-37.