Within a few years of the publication of Amartya Sen’s Poverty and Famines: An Essay on Entitlement and Deprivation in 1981, the ‘entitlement approach’ had effectively displaced Malthusianism as the dominant theoretical framework for explaining and analysing famines. The contribution of the entitlement approach to famine studies cannot be underestimated: it revolutionized famine thinking. On the other hand, it has also attracted much controversy, and its claims as a robust theory of famine causation remain contested.