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Morally ruled behaviour: The neglected contribution of Scholasticism


  • Oscar De-Juan
  • Fabio Monsalve


In the analysis of 'justice' in market exchanges, the scholastic doctors made some contributions to the theories of prices and money. But probably the most important (and neglected) contribution lies in the domain of anthropology, i.e. in the explanation of human nature and human behaviour. In this paper the authors are going to work out two scholastic ideas that provide an alternative to the individualist and utilitarian approach of neoclassical economics. (1) Persons are morally ruled beings; a sense of 'duty' is a key element in their behaviour; (2) Persons are social beings competing and cooperating to achieve certain goals. Dominant positions and privileged information grant them special powers that should not be abused.

Suggested Citation

  • Oscar De-Juan & Fabio Monsalve, 2006. "Morally ruled behaviour: The neglected contribution of Scholasticism," The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(1), pages 99-112.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:eujhet:v:13:y:2006:i:1:p:99-112
    DOI: 10.1080/09672560500522827

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Robert H. Frank & Thomas Gilovich & Dennis T. Regan, 1993. "Does Studying Economics Inhibit Cooperation?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(2), pages 159-171, Spring.
    2. James Konow, 2003. "Which Is the Fairest One of All? A Positive Analysis of Justice Theories," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 41(4), pages 1188-1239, December.
    3. David Levine, 1998. "The self and its interests in classical political economy," The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(1), pages 36-59.
    4. Langholm,Odd, 1998. "The Legacy of Scholasticism in Economic Thought," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521621595.
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