Is Relationality Always Other-Oriented? Adam Smith, Catholic Social Teaching, and Civil Economy

Paolo Santori*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Recent studies have investigated connections between Adam Smith's economic and philosophical ideas and Catholic Social Teaching (CST). Scholars argue that their common background lies in their respective anthropologies, both endorsing a relational view of human beings. I raise one main concern regarding these analyses. I suggest that the relationality endorsed by Smith lacks a central element present in CST-the other-oriented perspective which is the intentional concern for promoting the good of others. Some key elements of CST, such as love, gift, gratuitousness, and fraternity, find a very different space in Smith's social view and very little space in his economic view. Moreover, I show how CST relationality is more in accordance with a civil economy view of the market as a place of fraternity and mutual assistance.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages20
JournalPhilosophy of management
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 3 May 2021
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Adam Smith
  • Catholic Social Doctrine
  • Fraternity
  • Market
  • Civil economy
  • COMMON GOOD
  • CAPITALISM
  • GENOVESIS
  • SYMPATHY
  • VIRTUES
  • WORK

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