Homework answers / question archive / Question Nos, 23 to 26 in the context of the following passage: Perhaps the most important thematic deficiency of traditional development economics is its concentration on national product, aggregate income and total supply of particular goods rather than on 'entitlements of people and the capabilities' these entitlements generate
Question Nos, 23 to 26 in the context of the following passage: Perhaps the most important thematic deficiency of traditional development economics is its concentration on national product, aggregate income and total supply of particular goods rather than on 'entitlements of people and the capabilities' these entitlements generate. Ultimately, the process of economic development has to be concerned with what people can or cannot do, e.g., whether they can live long, escape avoidable morbidity, be well-nourished, be able to read and write and communicate, take part in literary and scientific pursuits, and so forth. It has to do, in Marx's words, with "replacing the domination of circumstances and chance over individuals by the domination of individuals over chance and circumstances". Entitlement refers to the set of alternative commodity bundles that a person can command in a society using the totality of rights and opportunities that he or she faces. Entitlements are relatively simple to characterize in a purely market economy. If a person can, say, earn $ 200 by selling his labor power and other saleable objects he has or can produce, then his entitlements refer to the set of all commodity bundles costing no more than $ 200. He can buy any such bundle, but no more than that, and the limit is set by his ownership ('endowment) and his exchange possibilities ('exchange entitlement), the two together determining his overall entitlement. On the basis of this entitlement, a person can acquire some capabilities, i.e., the ability to do this or that (e.g., be well-nourished), and fail to acquire some other capabilities.
The process of economic development can be seen as a process of expanding the capabilities of people. Given the functional relation between entitlements of persons over goods and their capabilities, a useful-though derivative-characterization of economic development is in terms of expansion of entitlements. (Source : Amartya Sen, 1983, "Development : Which Way Now?", The Economic Journal, 93(372): pp 754-755) 23. According to the author, traditional development economics is deficient because it focusses on (a) total supply of commodities (b) individual's command over commodities (c) individual's rights (d) None of the above 24. The ability to read and write and communicate" (a) is an entitlement (b) is a capability (c) is an endowment (d) is a right 25. Which of the following is true? (n) Aggregate supply of commodities is the most adequate measure of development (b) Entitlement is a function of capabilities (c) A person's endowments exclusively determine her entitlements (d) None of the above 26. An unemployed person fails to acquire certain capabilities because (a) she has no endowment (b) she does not want to sell her endowment (c) she gets unemployment benefits (d) she cannot sell her endowment