2015년 4월 1일 수요일

[발췌: 아마티아 센, 자유로서의 발전] Chap 1, The Perspective of Freedom

출처: Amartya Sen. Development as Freedom. Alfred A. Knopf, 1999.
자료: 구글도서


※ 발췌: p. 18 ~
* * *

Chapter 1_ The Perspective of Freedom 


1.1 Forms of Unfreedom  (p. 15)


1.2 Process and Opportunities  (p. 17)


1.3 Two Roles of Freedom (p. 18)

The analysis of development presented in this book treats the freedoms of individuals as the basic building blocks. Attention is thus paid particularly to the expansion of the "capabilities" of persons to lead the kind of lives they value─and have reason to value. These capabilities can be enhanced by public policy, but also, on the other hand, the direction of public policy can be influenced by the effective use of participatory capabilities by the public. The ^two-way relationship^ is central to the analysis presented here.

There are two distinct reasons for the crucial importance of individual freedom in the concept of development, related respectively to ^evaluation^ and ^effectiveness^. [n.5] First, in the normative approach used here, substantive individual freedoms are taken to be critical. The success of a society is to be evaluated, in this view, primarily by the substantive freedoms that the members of that society enjoy. This evaluative position differs from the informational focus of more traditional normative approach, which focus on other variables, such as utility, or procedural liberty, or real income.

Having greater freedom to do the things one has reason to value is (1) significant in itself for the person's overall freedom, and (2) important in fostering the person's opportunity to have valuable outcomes.[n.6]  Both are relevant to the evaluation of freedom of the members of the society and thus crucial to the assessment of the society's development. The reasons for this normative focus (and in particular for seeing justice in terms of individual freedoms and its social correlates) is more fully examined in chapter 3.

The second reason for taking substantive freedom to be so crucial is that freedom is not only the basis of the evaluation of success and failure, but it is also a principal determinant of individual initiative and social effectiveness. Greater freedom enhances the ability of people to help themselves and also to influence the world, and these matters are central to the process of development. The concern here relates to what we may call (at the risk of some oversimplification) the "agency aspect" of the individual.

The use of the term "agency" calls for a little clarification. The expression "agent" is sometimes employed in the literature of economics and game theory to denote a person who is acting on someone else's behalf (perhaps being led on by a "principal"), and whose achievements are to be assessed in the light of someone else's (the principal's) goal. I am using the term "agent" not in this sense, but in its older─and "grander"─sense as someone who acts and brings about change, and whose achievements can be judged in terms of her own values and objectives, whether or not we assess them in terms of some external criteria as well. This work is particularly concerned with the agency role of the individual as a member of the public and as a participant in economic, social, and political actions (varying from taking part in the market to being involved, directly or indirectly, in individual or joint activities in political and other spheres).

This has a bearing on a great many public policy issues, varying from such strategic matters as the widespread temptation of policy bosses to use fine-tuned "targeting" (for "ideal delivery" to a supposedly inert population), to such fundamental subjects as attempts to dissociate the running of governments from the process of democratic scrutiny and rejection (and the participatory exercise of political and civil rights). [n.7]


1.4 Evaluative Systems: Incomes and Capabilities  (p. 19)

On the evaluative side, the approach used here concentrates on a factual base that differentiates it from more traditional practical ethics and economic policy analysis, such as [:]
  • the "economic" concentration on the primacy of ^income and wealth^ (rather than on the characteristics of human lives and substantive freedoms),
  • the "utilitarian" focus on ^mental satisfaction^ (rather than on creative discontent and constructive dissatisfaction),
  • the "libertarian" preoccupation with ^procedures^ for liberty (with deliberate neglect of consequences that derive from those procedures) and so on. 
The overarching case for a different factual base, which focuses on substantive freedoms that people have reason to enjoy, is examined in chapter 3.

This is not to deny that deprivation of individual capabilities can have close links with the lowness of income, which connects in both directions: (1) low income can be a major reason for illiteracy and ill health as well as hunger and undernourishment, and (2) conversely, better education and health help in the earning of higher incomes. These connections have to be fully seized. But there are also other influences on the basic capabilities and effective freedoms that individual enjoy, and there are good reasons to study the nature and reach of these interconnections. Indeed, income deprivations and capability deprivations often have considerable correlational linkages, it is important to avoid being mesmerized into thinking that taking note of the former would somehow tell us enough about the latter. The connections are not that tight, and the departures are often much important from a policy point of view than the limited concurrence of the two sets of variables. If our attention is shifted from an exclusive concentration on income poverty to the more inclusive idea of capability deprivation, we can better understand the poverty of human lives and freedoms in terms of a different informational base (involving statistics of a kind that the income perspective tends to crowd out as a reference point for policy analysis). The role of income and wealth─important as it is along with other influences─has to be integrated into a broader and fuller picture of success and deprivation.


1.5 Poverty and Inequality  (p. 20)

( ... ) There are good reasons for seeing poverty as a deprivation of basic capabilities, rather than merely as low income. Deprivation of elementary capabilities can be reflected in premature mortality, significant undernourishment (esp. of children), persistent morbidity, widespread illiteracy and other failures. ( ... ... )

The shift in perspective is important in giving us a different─and more directly relevant─view of poverty not only in ^developing^ countries, but also in the more ^affluent^ societies. The presence of massive unemployment in Europe (10 to 12% in many of the major European countries) entails deprivations that are not well reflected in income distribution statistics. These deprivations are often downplayed on the grounds that the European system of social security (including unemployment insurance) tends to make up for the loss of income of the unemployed. But unemployment is not merely a deficiency of income that can be made up through transfers by the state (at heavy fiscal cost that can itself be a very serious burden); it is also a source of far-reaching debilitating effects on individual freedom, initiative, and skills. ( ... ) Indeed, it is hard to escape a sense of manifest incongruity in contemporary European attempts to move to a more "self-help" social climate without devising adequate policies or reducing the massive and intolerable levels of unemployment that make such self-help extremely difficult.


1.6 Income and Mortality  (p. 21)


1.7 Freedom, Capability and the Quality of Life  (p. 24)

( ... ... )

Indeed, the origin of economics was significantly motivated by the need to study the assessment of, and causal influences on, the opportunities that people have for good living. Aside from Aristotle's classic use of this idea, similar notions were much used in the early writings on national accounts and economic prosperity, pioneered by William Petty in the 17th century, and followed by Gregory King, François Quesnay, Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier, Joseph-Louis Lagrange and others. When the national accounts devised by these leaders of economic analysis established the foundations of the modern concept of income, their attention was never confined to this one concept. They also saw the importance of income to be instrumental and circumstantially contingent. [n.16]

For example, while William Petty had pioneered both "the income method" and "the expenditure method" of estimating national income (the modern methods of estimation directly follow from these early attempts), he was explicitly concerned with "the Common Safety" and "each Man's particular Happiness." ( ... ... )


1.8 Markets and Freedoms  (p. 25)

The role of the market mechanism is another subject that calls for some reclaiming of old heritage. The relation of the market mechanism to freedom and thus to economic development raises questions of at least two quite distinct types, which need to be clearly distinguished.
  • First, a denial of opportunities of transaction, through arbitrary controls, can be a source of unfreedom in itself. People are then prevented from doing what can be taken to be─in the absence of compelling reasons to the contrary─something that is within their right to do. This point does not depend on the efficiency of the market mechanism or on any extensive analysis of the consequences of having or not having a market system; it turns simply on the importance of freedom of exchange and transaction without let or hindrance.
  • This argument for the market has to be distinguished from a second argument, which is very popular right now: that markets typically work to expand income and wealth and economic opportunities that people have. 
Arbitrary restrictions of the market mechanism can lead to a reduction of freedom because of the consequential effects of the absence of markets. Deprivations can result when people are denied the economic opportunities and favorable consequences that markets offer and support.

These two arguments in favor of the market mechanism, both relevant to the perspective of substantive freedoms, have to be separated out. In the contemporary economic literature, it is the latter argument─based on the effective working and favorable results of the market mechanism─that receives virtually all the attention.[n.18] That argument is certainly strong, in general, and there is plenty of empirical evidence that the market system can be an engine of fast economic growth and expansion of living standards. Policies that restrict market opportunities can have the effect of restraining the expansion of substantive freedoms that would have been generated through market system, mainly through overall economic prosperity. This is not to deny that markets can sometimes be counterproductive (as Adam Smith himself pointed out, in supporting in particular the need for control in financial market).[n.19] There are serious arguments for regulation in some cases. But by and large the positive effects of the market system are now much more widely recognized than they were even a few decades ago.

However, this case for the use of markets is altogether different from the argument that people have the right to undertake transactions and exchange. Even if such rights are not accepted as being inviolable─and entirely independent of their consequences─it can still be argued that there is some social loss involved in denying people the right to interact economically with each other. If it so happens that the effects of such transactions are so bad for others that this prima facie presumption in favor of allowing people to transact as they like may be sensibly restricted, there is still something directly lost in imposing this restriction (even if it is outweighed by the alternative loss of the indirect effects of these transactions on ^others^).

The discipline of economics has tended to move away from focusing on the value of freedoms to that of utilities, incomes and wealth. This narrowing of focus leads to an underappreciation of the full role of the market mechanism, even though economics as a profession can hardly be accused of not praising the markets enough. The issue, however, is not the amount of praise, but the reasons for it.

Take for example the well-known argument in economics that a competitive market mechanism can achieve a type of efficiency that a centralized system cannot plausibly achieve both because of the economy of information (each person acting in the market does not have to know very much) and the compatibility of incentives (each person's canny actions can merge nicely with those of others). Consider now, contrary to what is generally assumed, a case in which the same economic result is brought about by a fully centralized system with all the decisions of everyone regarding production and allocation being made by a dictator. Would that have been just as good an achievement?

It is not hard to argue that something would be missing in such a scenario, to wit, the freedom of people to act as they like in deciding on where to work, what to produce, what to consume and so on. Even if in both the scenarios (involving, respectively, free choice and compliance to dictational order) a person produces the same commodities in the same way and ends up with the same income and buys the same goods, she may still have very good reason to prefer the scenario of free choice over that of submission to order. There is a distinction between "culmination outcomes" (that is, only final outcomes without taking any note of the process of getting there, including the exercise of freedom) and "comprehensive outcomes" (taking note of the processes through which the culmination outcomes come about)─a distinction the central relevance of which I have tried to analyze more fully elsewhere.[n.20] The merit of the market system does not lie only in its capacity to generate more efficient culmination outcomes.

The shift in the focus of attention of pro-market economics from freedom to utility has been achieved at some cost: the neglect of the central value of freedom itself. John Hicks, one of the leading economists of this century, who himself was far more utility-oriented than freedom-oriented, did put the issue with admirable clarity in a passage on this subject:
The liberal, or non-interference, principles of the classical (Smithian or Ricardian) economists were not, in the first place, economic principles; they were an application to economics of principles that were thought to apply to a much wider field. The contention that economic freedom made for economic efficiency was no more than a secondary support. ... What I do question is whether we are justified in forgetting, as completely as most of us have done, the other side of the argument. [n.21]
( ... ... ) One of the biggest changes in the process of development in many economies involves the replacement of bonded labor and forced work, which characterize parts of many traditional agricultures, with a system of free labor contract and unrestrained physical movement. A freedom-based perspective on development picks up this issue immediately in a way that an evaluative system that focuses only on culmination outcomes may not.

The point can be illustrated with the debates surrounding the nature of slave labor in the soutnern US before its abolition. The classic study on the subject by Robert Fogel and Stanley Engerman (^Time on the Cross: The Economics of American Negro Slavery^) includes a remarkable findings about the relatively high "pecuniary incomes" of the slaves. (Controversies on some issues covered in this book did not seriously undermine this finding.) The commodity baskets of consumptino of slaves compared favorably─certainly not unfavorably─with the incomes of free agricultural laborers. And the slaves' life expectancy too was, relatively speaking, not especially low─"nearly identical with the life expectation of countries as advanced as France and Holland," and "much longer [than] life expectations [of] free urban industrial workers in both the US and Europe." [n.22] And yet slaves did run away, and there were excellent reasons for presuming that the interest of the slaves was not well served by the system of slavery. In fact, even the attempts, after the abolition of slavery, to get the slaves back, to make them work like slaves (particularly in the form o "gang work:), but at high wages, were not successful.
After the slaves were freed many planters attempted to reconstruct their work gangs on the basis of wage payments. But such attempts generally foundered, despite the fact that the wages offered to freedman exceeded the incomes they had received as slaves by more than 100%. Even at this premium planters found it impossible to maintain the gang system once they were deprived of the right to apply force.[n.23]
The importance of freedom of employment and that in working practice is crucial to understanding the valuations involved.[n.24]

In fact, Karl Marx's favorable remarks on capitalism as against the unfreedom of precapitalist labor arrangements related exactly to this question, which also produced Marx's chracterization of the American Civil War as "the one great event of contemporary history."[n.25] Indeed, this issue of market-based freedom is quite central to the analysis of bonded labor─common in many developing countries─and the transition to free-contract labor arrangements. This, in fact, is one of the cases in which Marxian analysis has tended to have an affinity with libertarian concentration on freedom as opposed to utility.

For example, in his major study of transition from bonded labor to wage labor in India, V.K. Ramachandran provides an illuminating picture of the empirical importance of this question in the contemporary agrarian situation in southern India:
Marx distinguishes between (to use the term used by Jon Elster) the ^formal freedom^ of the worker under capitalism and the ^real unfreedom^ of workers in pre-capitalist systems: "the freedom of workers to change employers makes him free in a way not found in earlier modes of production." The study of the development of wage labour in agriculture is important from another perspective as well. The extension of the freedom of workers in a society to sell their labour power is an enhancement of their positive freedom, which is, in turn, an important measure of how well that society is doing. [n.26]
The linked presence of labor bondage with indebtedness yields a particularly tenacious form of unfreedom in many precapitalist agricultures.[n.27] Seeing development as freedom permits a direct approach to this issue that is not parasitic on having to show that labor markets also raise productivity of agriculture─a serious issue on its own but quite different from the question of freedom of contract and employment.

( ... ... )


1.9 Values and The Process of Valuation  (p. 30)

I return now to ^evaluation^. Since our freedoms are diverse, there is room for explicit valuation in determining the relative weights of different types of freedoms in assessing individual advantages and social progress. Valuations are, of course, involved in all such approaches (including utilitarianism, libertarianism, and other approaches, to be discussed in chapter 3), even though they are often made implicitly. Those who prefer a mechanical index, without the need to be explicit about what values are being used and why, have a tendency to grumble that the freedom-based approach requires that valuations be explicitly made. Such complaints have frequently been aired. But explicitness, I shall argue, is an important asset for a valuational exercise, especially or it to be open to public scrutiny and criticism. Indeed, one of the strongest arguments in favor of political freedom lies precisely in the opportunity it gives citizens to discuss and debate─and to participate in the selection of─values in the choice of priorities (to be discussed in chapter 6 through 11).

Individual freedom is quintessentially a social product, and there is a two-way relation between (1) social arrangements to expand individual freedoms and (2) the use of individual freedoms not only to improve the respective lives but also to make the social arrangements more appropriate and effective. Also, individual conceptions of justice and propriety, which influence the specific uses that individuals make of their freedoms, depend on social associations─particularly on the interactive formation of public perceptions and on collaborative comprehension of problem and remedies. The analysis and assessment of public policies have to be sensitive to these diverse connections.


1.10 Tradition, Culture and Democracy  (p. 31)

The issue of participation is also central to some of the foundational questions that have plagued the force and reach of develoment theory. For example, it has been argued by some that economic development as we know it may actually be harmful for a nation, since it may lead to the eliminatin of its traditions and cultural heritage. [n.29] Objections of this kind are often quickly dismissed on the ground that it is better to be rich and happy than to be impoverihed and traditional. This may be a persuasive slogan, but it is scarcely an adequate response to the critique under discussion. Nor does it reflect a serious engagement with the critical valuational issue that is being raised by development skeptics.

The more serious issue, rather, concerns the source of authority and legitimacy. There is an inescapable valuational problem involved in deciding what to choose if and when it turns out that some parts of traditin cannot be maintained along with economic and social changes that may be needed for other reasons. It is a choice that the people involved have to face and assess. The choice is neither closed (as many development apologists seem to suggest), nor is it one for the elite "guardians" of tradition to settle (as many development skeptics seem to presume). If a traditional way of life has to be sacrificed to escape grinding poverty or minuscule longevity (as many traditional societies have had for thousands of years), than it is the people directly involved who must have the opportunity to participate in deciding what should be chosen. The real conflict is between:
  • (1) the basic value that the people must be allowed to decide freely what traditions they wish or not wish to follow; and
  • (2) the insistence that established traditions be followed (no matter what), or, alternatively, people must obey the decisions by religious or secular authorities who enforce traditions─real or imagined.

The force of the former precept lies in the basic importance of human freedom, and once that is accepted there are strong implications on what can or cannot be done in the name of tradition. The approach of "development as freedom" emphasizes this precept.

( ... ... ) The pointer to any real conflict between the preservation of tradition and the advantages of modernity calls for a participatory resolution, not for a unilateral rejection of modernity in favor of tradition by political rulers, or religious authorities, or anthropological admirers of the legacy of the past. The question is not only not closed, it must be wide open for people in the society to address and join in deciding. An attempt to choke off participatory freedom on grounds of traditional values (such as religious fundamentalism, or political custom, or the so-called Asian values) simply misses the issue of legitimacy and the need for the people affected to participate in deciding what they want and what they have reason to accept.

( ... ... )

1.11 Concluding Remarks  (p. 33)

( ... ... )

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