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Panel Discussion, The Unrealized Horrors of Population Explosion
October 2, 2015 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Moderator: Dr. S. Philip Morgan
Dr. Yong Cai: CPC Faculty Fellow (Sociology)
Dr. Peter Coclanis: CPC Faculty Fellow (History)
Dr. Sian Curtis: CPC Faculty Fellow (Maternal & Child Health)
Dr. Paul Leslie: CPC Faculty Fellow (Anthropology)
Rapid population growth in the 1950s, 60s and 70s raised concern about a population explosion with repercussions for the environment, resource depletion and political stability. One could argue that the “population bomb” (Ehrlich, 1968) has been diffused – global population growth has slowed and many predict its end in the next half-century. Concern about population growth spawned a “social movement” to curb fertility; a few at the time called this hysteria and an overreaction. In retrospect more are asking this question, as the New York Times (http://tiny.cc/zlb62x) did this summer. In his 2011 PAA Presidential address, David Lam raised similar questions, as did a cover story in The Economist (October, 2009). What do we think?
Lam, D. (2011). How the world survived the population bomb: Lessons from 50 years of extraordinary demographic history. Demography, 48(4), 1231-1262.