The True Wealth of Nations: Catholic Social Thought and Economic Life

Paperback | September 25, 2010

EditorDaniel K. Finn

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Roman Catholic social thought has had much to say about economic life: about virtues and moral principles, about individuals, communities, and institutions. Catholic social thought (CST) is a complex body of ideas that has real consequences, well-described by Hans Urs von Balthasar as"symphonic" in its multiple principles and approaches, nonetheless producing an integrated vision. This tradition can best be understood if it is taken most seriously. The authors of the fifteen papers in this collection begin with a fundamental proposition: that the economic and cultural criteriaidentified in the tradition of Catholic social thought provide an effective path to sustainable prosperity for all. Two papers undertake the challenge of specifying the means CST recommends and the goals for which it aims. Five are historical studies: of the change in worldview from the medieval tothe present, of the medieval Franciscan roots of markets, of the empirical impact that Christian democratic parties and labor unions have had on European society, and of the legal and moral analysis of "the unjust contract." Six papers examine CST and the fundamental proposition from diverseperspectives: from Africa, Latin America, sociology, the economics view of women, and eco-feminism. Finally, two papers provide an introductory chapter and a conclusion addressing the question of how practically to think of the potential implementation of CST in a world rarely open to change.

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Roman Catholic social thought has had much to say about economic life: about virtues and moral principles, about individuals, communities, and institutions. Catholic social thought (CST) is a complex body of ideas that has real consequences, well-described by Hans Urs von Balthasar as"symphonic" in its multiple principles and approache...

Daniel Finn is Professor of Theology and William E. and Virginia Clemens Chair in Economics and the Liberal Arts at St. John's University in Collegeville, Minnesota.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:336 pages, 9.25 × 6.12 × 0.68 inPublished:September 25, 2010Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:019973982X

ISBN - 13:9780199739820

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Table of Contents

List of ContributorsPrefaceIntroduction1. Albino Barrera: What Does Catholic Social Thought Recommend for the Economy? The Economic Common Good as a Path to True Prosperity2. Andrew Yuengert: What is "Sustainable Prosperity for All" in the Catholic Social Tradition3. Stefano Zamagni: Catholic Social Thought, Civil Economy, and the Spirit of Capitalism4. Vera Zamagni: The Political and Economic Impact of CST since 1891: Christian Democracy and Christian Labour Unions in Europe5. Vincent D. Rougeau: Just Contracts and Catholic Social Teaching: A Perspective from Anglo-American Law6. Daniel K. Finn: The Unjust Contract: A Moral Evaluation7. Mary Hirschfeld: From a Theological Frame to a Secular Frame: How Historical Context Shapes our Understanding of the Principles of Catholic Social Thought8. John A. Coleman: Wealth Creation, Social Virtues: Social Capital's Role in Creating and Sustaining Wealth9. Simona Beretta: What Do We Know about the Economic Situations of Women and What Does it Mean for a Just Economy?10. Paulinus I. Odozor, C.S.Sp.: Truly Africa, and Wealthy! What Africa Can Learn from Catholic Social Teaching about Sustainable Economic Prosperity11. Jon P. Gunnemann: Capital, Spirit, and Common Wealth12. Maylin Biggadike: An Ecofeminist Approach to the True Wealth Projec13. John Carr: Moving from Research to Action: Some Lessons and Directions (From a Catholic Social Ministry Bureaucrat)