On Amartya Sen's work
VIKASANAM THANNE SWATHANTHRYAM: Amartya Sen, Translated by Ignatius Kakkanadan and M. P. Sadasivan; Kerala Bhasha Institute, Thiruvananthapuram. Rs. 210.
AMARTYA SEN'S "Development as Freedom", based on his lectures delivered while serving as Presidential Fellow at the World Bank, is a significant work that attempts to synthesise elements of capitalist and socialist concepts of development. Drawing extensively from the experiences of different societies, he makes out a case for viewing development as a process that enlarges the freedoms that people enjoy. He points out that Adam Smith, who wanted the government to confine itself to maintaining social order, had great concern for the poor.
Sen seeks to reconcile the responsibilities of the individual with those of the society. In providing a common focus for political freedom, economic prosperity and social justice, he appears to be preparing the ground for a unified social theory that meets the needs of our time.
This Malayalam translation of Sen's book, apart from contributing to enrichment of the knowledge base of the language, gives the people of Kerala greater opportunity to familiarise themselves with the ideas of the Nobel laureate, who has striven to understand and explain the State's developmental experience.
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