The field of development studies owes a great debt to Amartya Sen. This paper reviews the strengths and weaknesses of Sen’s account of ‘development as freedom’. It considers how Sen has developed his arguments in terms of four key ‘spaces’: what he calls the space of economic or moral evaluation, and what I call the spaces of geography, culture and politics. If there are problematic areas in Sen’s work, they lie in his treatments of authoritarian rule, of the rights to difference of certain social groups, and of political power, and in the indeterminacy of some of his policy recommendations
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