Rethinking human well-being: a dialogue with Amartya Sen
AbstractThe paper undertakes a critical dialogue with the perspective of human well-being offered by Amartya Sen. Sen's notions of functioning and capability of individuals lack emphasis on self-development and how individuals can themselves advance their functioning and capability. Further, his notion of well-being as distinct from the agency aspect of the human person and his dualism of negative and positive freedom are not helpful for what Sen himself calls a comprehensive redefinition of human development as a quest for freedom. Finally, freedom is not sufficient, and development as freedom needs to be supplemented by a quest for development as responsibility. To overcome all this is difficult within Sen's frame of reference because of its lack of an ontological striving or a deep conceptualization of self and self-preparation. This prevents realization of the full potential of his quest for a wider supportive environment for human well-being, consisting of internal criticism of traditions, a pluralist framework of secular toleration and an epistemology of positional objectivity. Copyright © 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Journal of International Development.
Volume (Year): 12 (2000)
Issue (Month): 7 ()
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- Sen, Amartya, 1989. "Food and freedom," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 17(6), pages 769-781, June.
- Sen, Amartya, 1998. "Human development and financial conservatism," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 733-742, April.
- Fabio Zagonari, 2011. "Which Ethics Will Make us Individually and Socially Happier? A Cross-Culture and Cross-Development Analytical Model," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 77-103, March.
- Gasper, Des, 2004. "Human Well-being: Concepts and Conceptualizations," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
- Des Gasper, 2000. "Development as freedom: taking economics beyond commodities-the cautious boldness of Amartya Sen," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(7), pages 989-1001.
- Des Gasper, 2002. "Is Sen's Capability Approach an Adequate Basis for Considering Human Development?," Review of Political Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(4), pages 435-461.
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