Essay on Poverty Is Not A Free Man

810 Words Oct 9th, 2015 4 Pages
For centuries, man has created maxims to define poverty, ranging from the notion that “one man’s trash is another’s treasure” to the belief that “a hungry man is not a free man”, but when pressed to objectively define poverty, the issue becomes considerably more complex. While one might think that globalization has allowed for the establishment of a universal standard of poverty, it would appear otherwise as currencies carry different purchasing power and costs of living vary both inter- and intra-nations. Though the past few decades have marked the creation of several tools to determine poverty, there remains a lack of consensus regarding what entails the label of “poverty”. Further complicating the matter are sub-divisions within the notion of poverty itself, ranging from relative poverty to extreme or absolute poverty, essentially creating an economic hierarchy even amongst the impoverished. While economists and sociologists might argue over the semantics of income and standard of living, ultimately the state of poverty is one in which individuals cannot adequately meet their needs, be it material products or potential to better one’s situation. It is critical to distinguish between two of the more widely-accepted theories regarding poverty, that is one which emphasizes income and financial capabilities in contrast to the capability approach which looks into one’s ability to “Live the life one values” (Defining Poverty, September 14th). The former looks into relative…

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