A free and fraternal economy

he Franciscan perspective

The globalized world has recently suffered a serious economic-financial crisis, which has put several Western countries on the verge of bankruptcy. Many analysts affirm that this is not just one more of the cyclical crises that are frequent in capitalism; instead, it would be a real structural crisis that has put into question the entire economic system and the anthropological foundations on which it has been built.

This book presents the important contribution that the Franciscan friars made, during the thirteenth, fourteenth, and fifteenth centuries, to understand, accept, and humanize the incipient market economy. For some authors, they were decisive in the emergence of the modern market economy. The friars even founded financial institutions: the Mounts of Piety. Those responses from yesterday can guide the search for solutions to the current crisis.

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