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A summery of Jared Diamond's article Malthus in Africa - Essay Example

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Names Course Institution Instructor Date Collapse of the Commons in the Society Jared Diamond explores several historical collapses in Rwanda and factors that contributed to the societal collapse. He asserted that the collapse of the commons in Rwanda has been reflected back in the colonial period, whereby, the German (1897) and Belgium (1996) colonial government created an ethnic distinction and dominancy between the Tutsi and the Hutu…
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A summery of Jared Diamonds article Malthus in Africa
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Download file to see previous pages Diamond acknowledges that the obligatory conduct is more likely in standardized cultures and the government regulation was necessary. In the case of Rwandan genocide, it was found necessary for the enforcement of moral principles. Moreover, Diamond points out three approaches to solve these problems: top down imposition of environmental controls, privatization of resources, and recognition of a common interest. These approaches have different strengths and if implemented well, could be very rewarding. Factors to the collapse of commons Political Instability played a role in the collapse of the commons. According to the book by the Human Rights Watch titled Leave None to Tell the Story: Genocide in Rwanda, the genocide rustled from the deliberate choice of modern elite, who had to foster hatred and fear to keep themselves in power. In the case of the Rwandan genocide, civilian Hutus formed militias, who set the road blocks and kill Tutsi. In organizing the attacks, there were radio transmissions appealing to every Hutu to kill every “cockroach”( Tutsi). It is therefore, believed that the civilians were operating under the influence of some political elites who wanted to attain their political interests. Therefore, ethnic hatred brought the conflict in Rwanda; whereby, politicians facilitated the split of the society. Diamond asserted that it is only through ethnic hatred that a community would kill itself as there were cases where the Hutu could kill Hutus. The land disputes in Rwanda undermined the cohesion of Rwandan society; the richer land owners were expected to help the poor ones but they failed because they were not rich to the extent of offering sound assistance to the poor society members. This led to the increase in cases of divorced or separated women, widows, orphans etc. According to Diamond, the conflict began even before the 1994 Rwanda genocide. The country experienced rising levels of violence and thefts, perpetrated by hungry and landless young people who lacked sufficient income and assignments to keep the occupied ( Malthus in Africa Rwanda Genocide Page 14). When the food yield does not further become insufficient due to the exponential growth of population, conflict may arise as the population cannot match the food production; competition on available resource (food) is experienced. The environment around us determines the productivity in the agricultural field, as well as other related fields. In this case, environmental damage can occur in many ways, which includes deforestation and habitat destruction, soil problems (erosion, Stalinization, and soil fertility losses), water management problems, overhunting, overfishing etc, and significantly affect agricultural production. In this regard, it brought the collapse of the commons, since it has a direct impact on the agricultural food production. Depletion of fossil fuels, of which Peak Oil is a major looming instance causes collapse of the commons; for instance, oil producing countries like Nigeria, Southern Sudan and Middle East countries have never had peace. The diamond analysis outlined the major issues that led to the collapse of the commons; for instance, the issue on the political elites using the commons to create conflict is a major factor of the political instability witnessed in some African countries. Diamond ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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