Who is Amartya Sen?

Early Life and Education 

Amartya Sen is an Indian Philosopher and economist who has been working and teaching in the United States and the United Kingdom. He is born to a Hindu Baidya Family in West Bengal during the time of British India. He was born on November 3, 1933, in Shanti Niketan, Bengal Presidency. His father was a professor at Dhaka University, and his name was Ashutosh Sen. Rabindranath Tagore was the one who named him. He has also been diagnosed with oral cancer, which has terrible numbers for chances of survival.

Sen was the second Vice-Chancellor of the Visva Bharati University from 1953-1954. His schooling was based in Dhaka in St Gregory’s School. After his education, he went to the Presidency College for further economics studies and came out with flying colours. In 1953, he went to Trinity College to attain his second degree in B.A. in economics.

Personal Life

Amartya Sen had been married thrice. His first wife was Nabaneeta Dev Sen, an Indian writer and scholar. They have had two daughters named Antara, a journalist and publisher by profession, and another daughter Nandana, an actress. But their marriage broke up in 1971. He got married again to an Italian economist named Eva Colorni. They also have two children named Kabir and Indrani. But Eva died of cancer in the year 1985. Then, in the year 1991, Sen got married to Emma Rothchild, who is a professor at Harvard University.

Suman Ghosh directed a 56-minute documentary for Sen named “Amartya Sen: A Life Re-examined”, which focused on his work and his life. This documentary was released in the year 2017.

Career and Awards

Sen started his career as a teacher and research scholar in the Economics Department at Jadavpur University in 1956. During this period, he was also a frequent visitor to the other premiere Economics Schools of India, like the Jawaharlal Nehru University and the Indian Statistical Institute. He was also the companion to the other economist as the former Prime Minister of the country, Dr Manmohan Singh and K.N.Raj, advisor to many prime ministers.

Sen, in the year 1987, joined Harvard as a Professor of Economics at Thomas W. Lamont University. In 1988, he was appointed the Master of the Trinity College, Cambridge, making him the first Asian head of Oxbridge College. In 2007, he was appointed as the chairman of the Nalanda Mentor Group.

This could help him examine the complete framework of the international corporation. Sen also chaired the Social Sciences jury for Infosys Prize from 2009 to 2011 and the Humanities jury from 2012 to 2018. Sen was severely criticized as the project suffered inordinate delays, mismanagements, and the lack of presence of the faculties on the ground when he was named as the first chancellor of the Nalanda University. So, later in the year, he withdrew his candidature in the second term.