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Digitus Dei est Hic

  • Naudet Jean-Yves

    (University of Aix-Marseille III & Association of Catholic Economists)

The relations of Frederic Bastiat with Faith are complex. He often speaks of God in his works, but his conversion, or rather his return, to the Catholicism was progressive and ended at the time of his death in 1850 in Rome. According to Bastiat, there is no opposition between science and Faith and, above all, economic and social harmonies express and reflect the wisdom of God.Moreover, Bastiat was to join the Catholics of his time, especially in the struggles for the freedom of eductaion, and he was to propose some reforms that the French Catholics adopted only later, such as the separation of the Church and the State; in this way, when he disagreed with the nineteenth century’s Catholics, he anticipated in fact the positions of the twentieth century’s Catholics, being in this instance, as in economic thought, ahead of his time.Les rapports de Frédéric Bastiat et de la foi sont complexes. Il parle souvent de Dieu dans ses oeuvres, mais sa conversion, ou plutôt son retour, au catholicisme a été lente et ne s’est achevée qu’au moment de sa mort à Rome en 1850. Pour Bastiat, il n’y a pas d’opposition entre science et Foi et, surtout, les harmonies sociales expriment et reflètent la sagesse de Dieu.Par ailleurs, Bastiat rejoindra les catholiques de son époque, en particulier dans les combats en faveur de la liberté de l’enseignement, et il proposera des réformes que les catholiques français n’accepteront que plus tard, comme la séparation de l’Eglise et de l’Etat ; en ce sens, lorsqu’il est en désaccord avec les catholiques du XIXème siècle, il anticipe en fait sur les positions des catholiques du XXème siècle, étant là aussi, comme en économie, en avance sur son temps.

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Article provided by De Gruyter in its journal Journal des Economistes et des Etudes Humaines.

Volume (Year): 11 (2001)
Issue (Month): 4 (December)
Pages: 1-9

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Handle: RePEc:bpj:jeehcn:v:11:y:2001:i:4:n:6
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