Article/Publication Details

Does Nussbaum Understand Capabilities as Freedoms?

(Original title: Chápe Nussbaumová spôsobilosti ako slobody?)
Filozofia, 2021, vol. 76, No 2, pp. 97 – 109.
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The aim of the article is to analyse and interpret the conceptualization of Nussbaum’s capabilities as freedoms. In the first part, we will focus on the main characteristics of the capability approach, of which Martha C. Nussbaum, together with Amartya Sen, is the main exponent. In the next section, we focus on the questions: Is it appropriate to apply Berlin’s distinction typology between “negative liberty” and “positive liberty” to Nussbaum’s understanding of capabilities? Is it adequate to equate her understanding of competences with “positive liberty”? Is it appropriate to use the terminology of freedom for the objectives that the capability-based approach seeks to achieve?


Capability approach, Central capabilities, Isaiah Berlin, Martha C. Nussbaum, Political freedom