Catholic Social Thought: Twilight Or Renaissance?
Jonathan Boswell, Francis P. McHugh, Johan Verstraeten
University Press, 2000 - Religion - 307 pages
These essays are an attempt to recover something of the form, style and force of Catholic non-official social thinking in the face of contemporary social thought and contemporary injustice in advanced societies. After an opening essay by the doyen of Catholic writers in this field, Jean-Yves Calvez, SJ, the book is divided into three sections. The first and largest group of essays discuss patterns and predicaments of Catholic social thought in general terms and from different points of view. The context here is partly the debate on modernity, high-modernity and post-modernity, partly the issue of how far and in what ways Catholic Social Thought can claim to be distinctive, relative to contemporary secular thought. The second section of the book focusses on relationships between Catholic social thought and its restatement, and a number of contemporary debates on public issues. Particular attention is given, in successive essays, to issues of anti-poverty, human rights, economic theory and international finance. A third and shorter section describes a number of institutional projects which attempt to carry Catholic social values forward into concrete action, focussing on work in health and welfare, grass roots economic co-operation, anti-poverty and international peace and justice. Final contributions by the reputed international scholar in this field, John Coleman, SJ, and the book editors, respectively evaluate the collection as a whole and discuss further steps.
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