Understanding Population Characteristics

  • Nathan Keyfitz
Part of the Springer Texts in Statistics book series (STS)


To understand a phenomenon we must break it down into simple elements and then put these elements together again in such a way as to reconstruct the phenomenon. This was the method Descartes proposed for study of the physical world, and it can be used to make intelligible the population characteristics presented as census and other data. Such characteristics as age, sex, marital status, birthplace, occupation, and industry can be treated by the Cartesian method, though not all with equal effectiveness.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nathan Keyfitz
    • 1
  1. 1.IIASALaxenburgAustria

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