Development as Freedom

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Knopf, 1999 - Current Events - 366 pages
184 Reviews
Development as Freedom is a general exposition of the economic ideas and analyses of Amartya Sen, winner of the 1998 Nobel Prize in Economic Science. This brilliant and indispensable treatise compellingly analyzes the nature of contemporary economic development from the perspective of human freedom. Freedom, Sen persuasively argues, is at once the ultimate goal of economic life and the most efficient means of realizing general welfare. It is a good to be enjoyed by the world's entire population. Drawing on moral and political philosophy and technical economic analysis, this work gives the nonspecialist reader powerful access to Sen's paradigm-altering vision and vividly shows how he, in the words of the Nobel Prize committee, has both "restored an ethical dimension to the discussion of economic problems" and "opened up new fields of study for subsequent generations of researchers."
To a world divided between those who fear the ruthlessness of the free market under prevailing conditions of global capitalism and those who fear the terror of authoritarian states that stifle indi-
vidual liberty as well as initiative, Development as Freedom presents a necessary intellectual and moral framework of analysis and scrutiny. By rigorously addressing one of the largest questions of all--"What is the relation between our economic wealth and our ability to live as we would like?"--Sen allows economics once again, as it did in the time of Adam Smith, to address the social basis of individual well-being and freedom. He also confronts the human dilemma that "despite unprecedented increases in overall opulence, the contemporary world denies elementary freedoms to vast numbers--perhaps eventhe majority--of people." This is a landmark work that shows how in individual human freedom--the exclusive possession, Sen shows, of no particular nation, region or historical, intellectual or religious tradition--lies the capacity for political participation, economic development and social progress.

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Review: Development as Freedom

User Review  - Goodreads

There are many interesting parts to this book, but I will emphasize two: first, the false tradeoff between economic development and democracy, and second, a theory of development as the expansion of ... Read full review

Review: Development as Freedom

User Review  - Katie Holbrook - Goodreads

I picked up this book not knowing the exact thesis (hint to past self: it's the title) but hoping to get an analysis of ideas of development with a depth that your typical 25-page academic paper doesn ... Read full review


The Perspective of Freedom
The Ends and the Means of Development 3 5
Freedom and the Foundations of Justice

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About the author (1999)

Amartya Sen is the master of Trinity College, Cambridge and the winner of the 1998 Nobel Prize in Economic Science. He lives in Cambridge, England.

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