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Human Dignity, Personal Freedom

Anno XXXIII, n. 143, gennaio-febbraio 1998
Centro Einaudi


Testo disponibile solo in lingua inglese.
The New Economics emphasises the role of human capital and comprises concepts that are crucial for the history of mankind, such as freedom, dignity, conscience and person. This essay seeks to reconstruct their origin. The issue of human dignity is analysed largely through the impact of Christianity on economics. The theological category of imago Dei attributes to human beings the duty to be creative in order to build the kingdom of God. The freedom to choose how we wish to spend our lives is the reason for life itself and the essence of the human drama. But if each human being is made in God’s image, this implies that everyone possesses the same dignity. Consequently, (interior) freedom and dignity are two closely connected aspects which, together with the concepts of conscience and person, owe their entry into western culture to the reflection on the Bible.