In Search of Ethical and Political Mechanisms
Anubhav Sengupta
DEVELOPMENT ON TRIAL: SHRINKING SPACE FOR THE PERIPHERY by Sunanda Sen and Byasdeb Dasgupta Orient Blackswan, 2014, 432 pp., 925
May 2014, volume 38, No 5

This review of the above mentioned title must begin on an unusual confessional note. It must be declared that I read this book as a student of social science in general, neither with the focus nor with acumen of a student of economics or development studies, to whom this book is broadly addressed. So it is a ‘guilty’ reading as Althusser’s was, in reading Marx’s Capital. I am however confident that such a reading is justifiable in so far as the issues the book is dealing with are no longer and must not be only concerns of economics. Neo-liberalism must be put on trial not only as an economic phenomenon but as a political ideology infiltrating tissues of social, political and even moral being. Also legitimacy towards such a reading may be drawn from the subtle political project that the book initially commits to. In the words of one essayist in the volume, Theotonio Dos Santos, the new social relations born out neoliberal, market driven economy ‘…cry out for the search for ethical and political mechanisms that are more conscientious and explicitly human to run modern society’ (pp. 46).

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