- List of Contributors
- Creation and Ethics
- Redemption and Ethics
- Eschatology and Ethics
- Ecclesiology and Ethics
- Divine Grace and Ethics
- Divine Commands
- Tradition in the Church
- Reason and Natural Law
- Love: A Kinship of Affliction and Redemption
- Christians and Government
- Christians and Family
- Christians and Economics
- Christians and Culture
- Christians and the Church
- Ernst Troeltsch's <i>The Social Teaching of the Christian Churches</i>
- Anders Nygren's <i>Agape and Eros</i>
- Kenneth Kirk's <i>The Vision of God</i>
- H. Richard Niebuhr's <i>Christ and Culture</i>
- Reinhold Niebuhr's <i>The Nature and Destiny of Man</i>
- John Mahoney's <i>The Making of Moral Theology</i>
- Catholic Social Teaching
- Index of Names
- Index of Scriptural References
Abstract and Keywords
Economic theory and practice often seek — either explicitly or implicitly — to maximize the common good conceived as the aggregate satisfaction of individual preferences. Christian ethics, of course, considers the common good, but always in its relationship to individual human dignity, not merely in relation to individual preferences. The commonplace assumption that Christian views of human dignity and economists' efforts to maximize the common good are incompatible should not surprise us. This article challenges that assumption and argues that the increasingly authoritative use of cost-benefit analysis for evaluating public policies and practices can maximize respect for the equal dignity of persons.
Harlan Beckley is Director of the Shepherd Program for the Interdisciplinary Study of Poverty and Human Capability and Fletcher Otey Thomas Professor of Religion at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia.
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