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The Labour Theory of Value and Social Justice. The Teachings of Social Catholic Criticisms of Bastiat's Doctrine


  • Tanon Arnaud Pellissier

    (Independant scholar in Ethics and Management)


Social Catholic criticisms of Frédéric Bastiats thinking, notably Charles Périns, clarify the link between the labour theory of value and the demands for social justice. Claiming that Bastiats theory of value rests on a sophism, Périn rejects his view that competition is the solution to the social question. Contrary to Bastiat, indeed, he accepts the labor theory of value and apparently makes it a standard of justice: according to him, rents sanction an injustice. Social Catholics, particularly René de La Tour du Pin, follow in his tracks, insisting that a specific course must be taken so as to set right the injustice of rents the course of what will be called furtherly social justice.Les critiques portées par les catholiques sociaux à la doctrine de Frédéric Bastiat, notamment celles de Charles Périn, permettent de comprendre le lien qui unit la théorie de la valeur travail et lexigence de justice sociale. Périn affirme que la théorie de la valeur de Bastiat repose sur un sophisme et repousse donc sa réponse à la question sociale, la concurrence. Il a adopté en effet, au contraire de Bastiat, la théorie de la valeur travail et la érigée, semble-t-il, en critère de justice : la rente consacre, à ses yeux, une injustice. A sa suite, les catholiques sociaux, exemplairement, René de La tour du Pin, affirmeront quil faut mener une action spécifique pour corriger linjustice de la rente et lappelleront justice sociale.

Suggested Citation

  • Tanon Arnaud Pellissier, 2001. "The Labour Theory of Value and Social Justice. The Teachings of Social Catholic Criticisms of Bastiat's Doctrine," Journal des Economistes et des Etudes Humaines, De Gruyter, vol. 11(2), pages 1-17, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:jeehcn:v:11:y:2001:i:2:n:4

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Frydman, Roman & Gray, Cheryl & Hessel, Marek & Rapaczynski, Andrzej, 1997. "Private Ownership and Corporate Performance: Some Lessons from Transition Economies," Working Papers 97-28, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
    2. Barberis, Nicholas & Maxim Boycko & Andrei Shleifer & Natalia Tsukanova, 1996. "How Does Privatization Work? Evidence from the Russian Shops," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(4), pages 764-790, August.
    3. Frydman, Roman & Gray, Cheryl W. & Hessel, Marek & Rapaczynski, Andrzej, 1997. "Private ownership and corporate performance : some lessons from transition economies," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1830, The World Bank.
    4. Dewatripont, M & Roland, G, 1992. "The Virtues of Gradualism and Legitimacy in the Transition to a Market Economy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 102(411), pages 291-300, March.
    5. Oleh Havrylyshyn & Donal McGettigan, 1999. "Privatization in Transition Countries; A Sampling of the Literature," IMF Working Papers 99/6, International Monetary Fund.
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