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The Political Economy of Hunger: Volume 1: Entitlement and Well-being$
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Jean Drèze and Amartya Sen

Print publication date: 1991

Print ISBN-13: 9780198286356

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198286356.001.0001

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The Politics of Hunger and Entitlement *

The Politics of Hunger and Entitlement *

(p.79) 4 The Politics of Hunger and Entitlement*
The Political Economy of Hunger: Volume 1: Entitlement and Well-being

Rehman Sobhan

Oxford University Press

Access to food depends on food supply, the ability to establish entitlement over food, production, market transaction, and household political power. Hunger originates in ‘entitlement failures’ bearing community specificity rather than household-specificity features. While emphasizing the political influences on a state's direct contribution to entitlements, this chapter tries to establish a causal nexus between politics, hunger, and entitlement. In general, much of the entitlement is generated by the state through aid, subsidy, employment, public distribution of commodities, and incomes. A developing country's control over entitlement depends on external and internal political influences, and policies often become functions of political priority or compulsions. The chapter argues that to raise a household's entitlement level, significant action of a political nature is necessary.

Keywords:   entitlement failures, household political power, political forces, household entitlements, food distribution

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