Defense versus Opulence?An Appraisal ofthe Malthus-Ricardo 1815Controversy on the Corn Laws

Rodolfo Signorino, Rodolfo Signorino, Neri Salvadori

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article proposes a rational reconstruction of the arguments of Malthusand Ricardo in their 1815 essays, Grounds of an Opinion and AnEssay on Profits, whereby a policy of free corn trade was repudiated andendorsed, respectively. Malthus envisaged defense and (trade-induced)opulence as two mutually alternative options and, if required to make achoice, he had no hesitation in choosing the former. By contrast, Ricardoexcluded any such trade-off, arguing that even in the case of war or poordomestic harvest, foreign agricultural countries would be seriously damagedif they opted for restrictions on their corn exports to Great Britain.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)151-184
Number of pages34
JournalHistory of Political Economy
Volume47
Publication statusPublished - 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • History
  • Economics and Econometrics

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