Essay on Famine is Not a Natural Disaster

Essay on Famine is Not a Natural Disaster

Length: 1606 words (4.6 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

This is the moment when we must come together to save this planet. Let us resolve that we will not leave our children a world where the oceans rise and famine spreads and terrible storms devastate our lands.
- Barack Obama

This quote taken from a speech that Barack Obama gave whilst running for the presidency will go down in history as an embodiment of the vision of hope and change that gave life to his campaign. It also is an explicit reference to anti-global warming movement. Although the sentiment is profoundly noble it is rather interesting that famine is presented in the same vein as sea rise and storms, that is to say presented as a direct result of environmental issues. Famine is however a greatly complicated issue.

There are two prominent strands of thought which consider famine a natural disaster- Malthusianism and climatology. Malthusianism takes its name from The Reverend Thomas Malthus. As a concept Malthusianism is concerned with demography. The theory claims that famine is a natural check on overpopulation. Famine keeps the balance between the need for food and food supplies (Devereux 2001:117). This is a simple yet deadly equation; too many mouths to feed + too little food = famine (Arnold 1988:34).However there is no evidence to support the claim that famine regulates populations. Yet there is evidence of baby booms following famines an example being that since the Chinese famine of 1960, where 30 million died, the population has increased from 650 million to over 1 billion (Devereux 2008:177) .Therefore perhaps the most useful way to see demographic pressure is as one of the underlying factors which increases vulnerability (Devereux 2001:126). ...

... middle of paper ...

...n Devereux, S. ed. The New Famines:Why Famines Persist in an Era of Globalization, London: Routledge pp. 1-26
Deverux, Stephen (2008) 'Food Aid and Trade', in S. Devereux and S. Maxwell eds. 2008 Food Security in Sub-Saharan Africa, ITDG. pp
Dréze, J. (2002) 'War and Famine', in V. Desai and R. Potter eds. 2002 The Companion to Development Studies, Arnold, pp.432-36
Madeley . J (2000) Hungry for Trade, Zed. pp 116-301
Sen, A (1981). ‘Poverty and Famines’, Clarendon Press ,Oxford pp39- 92
Smith, Ron. (2009). “Exceptional drought” covers 32 million acres in south Texas. Available: Last accessed 14th Dec 2010.
Wanmali, Suddhir and Islam, Yassir . (2002) 'Food Security’ in S. Devereux and S. Maxwell eds. 2008 Food Security in Sub-Saharan Africa, ITDG. pp 156-159

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

North Korea Famine Essay

- North Korea Famine Abstract Famine is the one of the biggest problems in the world. More than 800 million people are suffering from hunger. The people of North Korea suffer from hunger on the level of the notorious Somalia, Sudan, and Ethiopia famines. They just suffer in silence behind the world media. There are several facts about the North Korea famine. One of the main factors for the North Korea famine is political problems: The North Korean government ignores s people’s everyday lives and only does things for preparing war....   [tags: North Korean Famine World Essays]

Powerful Essays
1538 words (4.4 pages)

Impacts on Humans and Environmental Factors Associating with the Irish Potato Famine

- This project examines the impacts on humans and environmental factors associating with the Irish Potato Famine between the years of 1845 and 1852. This famine was named so due to Irish’s main staple food being potatoes and the affect of those potatoes on that country once they were unable to be grown. Also known as the Great Famine, which occurred in Ireland, this famine created a mass occasion of starvation, emigration, and disease. This event in history caused many changes throughout the world....   [tags: potato famine, great famine, irish farmers]

Powerful Essays
1993 words (5.7 pages)

Essay about Natural Disasters and Their Desctructive Nature

- Anatural disasteris a normal phenomenon of nature that affects the society and environment.A natural physical event that kills people (directly or indirectly) or exceeds local capacity to control damage or initiate recovery efforts The situation or event which overwhelms local capacity, necessitating a request to national levelfor external or international assistance. " This means that the situation or event overflows the capacity locally, showing that not only the In the case of the United States, assistance for extreme events is linked by law to the disaster declaration issued by the president....   [tags: assistance, damage, natural hazzard]

Powerful Essays
2454 words (7 pages)

Famine in Tibet Essay

- Famine in Tibet I. CONTEXT Tibet knew its first famine during 1960-62, as a result of the Chinese invasion of 1950. The food shortage occurred because Chinese colonizers settled massively, increasing the population, and because of the changes imposed on Tibetan traditional agriculture by Mao’s “Great Leap Forward.” Death Roll Accurate estimations and data about Tibetan victims of the Chinese genocide are hard to find, given that China provides biased information. However, associations like “Friends of Tibet” estimate that out of the 1.2 million deaths, 343,151 were caused by famine....   [tags: Papers]

Powerful Essays
1150 words (3.3 pages)

Peter Singer's Paper 'Famine, Affluence and Morality'

- Peter Singer's paper “Famine, Affluence, and Morality”has made a drastic impact in modern applied ethics. The simple nature of the paper makes for an easy read, yet the point clearly set out by Singer is at ends with the targeted audiences' popular beliefs. Although most will object to Singer's idea by throwing away a basic principle of most moral theories, I wish to deny Singer's solution by showing that the ability to apply Singer's conclusion is not reasonable and does not address the problem's core....   [tags: on poverty and action]

Powerful Essays
1498 words (4.3 pages)

Essay on The Great Famine And Black Death

- As most people well know the The Great Famine and Black Death were great tragedies that affected the people of the 14th century. Both events were natural disasters that lead to millions of deaths and sicknesses. The Great Famine was the first of these natural disasters beginning in 1315 lasting two years until 1317 (Nelson, 2011). The spread of the Black Death followed years later in 1346 lasting until 1351 (Nelson, 2011). Both of these events lead to the people of Europe to question their lifestyles, religious believes, and everyday actions....   [tags: Black Death, Yersinia pestis, Bubonic plague]

Powerful Essays
1349 words (3.9 pages)

Essay on Food Aid and Famine

- Food Aid and Famine The opening paragraph of a report written in 1999 by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations (UN) made for grim reading: "Almost 800 million people in the developing world do not have enough to eat. Another 34 million people in the industrialized countries and countries in transition also suffer from chronic food insecurity" It is apparent that globally there is a serious problem with providing enough food to eat to everyone that requires it....   [tags: Papers]

Powerful Essays
1596 words (4.6 pages)

Visual Representation: The Irish Famine of 1845-50 Essay

- Visual Representation: The Irish Famine of 1845-50 The intention of this short piece is to give an idea of the range of visual commentary on the great Famine of 1845-50. Many are found the pages of Punch and the Illustrated London News, and are increasingly reproduced in publications as varied as academic histories, popular paperback collections, commemorative anthologies and, of course, on the internet. The examples reproduced here are small selection chosen to tentatively explore how colonial attitudes may be explicitly or implicitly discerned in the representations of the Famine produced by and delivered to the imperial centre....   [tags: Essays Papers]

Free Essays
588 words (1.7 pages)

The Effect of Natural Disaster on a Society Essay

- Even though it is currently possible to predict most natural disasters and minimize their consequences, major social impacts still have been seen over recent decades. In this essay, a natural disaster is defined as a naturally occurring event that exerts adverse effects onto human society, including those caused by geological factors and infectious organisms. It may result in a wide range of aftermaths, however, only the most prominent ones of these will be examined including casualties caused by a disaster, public health crises and economic depression....   [tags: Natural Disaster]

Powerful Essays
1185 words (3.4 pages)

Essay on Facing a Natural Disaster

- Will you ever be part of nature’s disasters. Most natural disasters can be foreseen with the aid of advanced technology, but, overall, nature’s wonders occur unexpectedly. The majority of the human population does not know what to do before, during, and after a catastrophic event. The most common questions asked are: what is it, where will it take place, when will it happen, and who will be affected. It is important to have an understanding of what natural disasters may be and what could be experienced during a time of chaos....   [tags: Natural Disaster]

Powerful Essays
1099 words (3.1 pages)