Development and quality of life: A critique of Amartya Sen's Development As Freedom

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Presented here is a critical analysis of some of the major theses of Amartya Sen, as presented in his seminal work Development As Freedom. The author suggests that Sen's work, while representing a major break with the dominant neoliberal position reproduced in most national and international development agencies, is insufficient to explain the key relationship between freedom and development. The absence of an analysis of the power relations that cause and reproduce underdevelopment through national and international political institutions leaves Sen's work wanting. The author shows how Sen's interpretation of events and the conclusions derived from them, such as an explanation of famine in Bangladesh, are insufficient - when not faulty. The author also critically analyzes the United Nations Development Program reports, which, while documenting the nature and consequences of underdevelopment, barely touch on the political context in which underdevelopment occurs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)661-674
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Health Services
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy


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