Legge di natura e scienza economica

Quaderni Storici 35 (3):697-730 (2000)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
I argue that the difference between the 17th century new moral science and Scholastic Natural Law Theory derived primarily from the skeptical challenge the former had to face. Pufendorf's project of a 'scientia practica universalis' was the paramount expression of an anti-skeptical moral science, a «science» both explanatory and normative, but also anti-dogmatic in so far as it tried to base its laws on those basic phenomena of human life that supposedly were outside the scope of skeptical doubt. Of the Scholastic legacy to the new moral science, a dichotomy between an «intellettualistic» and a «voluntaristic» view of natural law (or between lex immanens and lex imposita). Voluntarism lays at the root both of theological views such as those of Calvinism and of political views such as those of Hobbes and Locke. A need to counterbalance undesirable implications of estreme voluntarism may account for much of 17th and 18th centuries developments in ethics and politics. Scottish natural jurisprudence, an expression of such quest for a third way between scepticism and extreme voluntarism, is less secular and more empirical than received wisdom admits of. One of its side-effects, namely a systematic, self-contained, and empirical economic theory, results from the search for a normative theory of social life on an empirical basis. The main tool for building such a theory, namely a view of societal laws as embedded in trans-individual mechanisms, derives from the voluntarist view of natural law as «imposed» law. Subsequent discussions of social issues based on the opposition of economic and ethical reasons originated partly from gross misreading of the Scottish natural jurisprudential framework for economic theory.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Revision history
Archival date: 2019-04-17
View upload history
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
La teodicea social de Adam Smith.Sergio Volodia Marcello Cremaschi - 2010 - Empresa y Humanismo 13 (1):333-374.

Add more citations

Added to PP index

Total views
44 ( #43,686 of 50,346 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
17 ( #31,409 of 50,346 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.