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This chapter outlines the NGO sector’s transformation from a vector for traditional ideas of charity, welfare and disaster relief, to the more expansive ‘NGO movement’, equally concerned with matters of human rights, economic equality and global justice, that it became. The emergence of a new generation of aid workers in the late 1960s and early 1970s is at the heart of this narrative. What challenges, the chapter asks, did these individuals pose to how NGOs thought about aid? And how did the sector adapt to these changes? To answer those questions, the chapter explores how left-wing critiques of aid, the influence of intellectuals like Paulo Freire, Ivan Illich and Argentinian economist Raúl Prebisch, and a new emphasis on poverty and inequality in transnational religious circles, converged in a common discourse that placed ‘justice’ (broadly defined). The emphasis on reform in those discussions was key. Ultimately, this story is one of compromise, of how ideas of advocacy and reform were absorbed and rearticulated by the NGO sector.
The year 2019 marks the 25th anniversary of the birth of democratic South Africa. While many hoped that the transition from apartheid to democracy would come with improved standards of living, this aspiration remains a mirage to millions confronted with prevalent hunger. To this end, the chapter interrogates whether those who benefitted from the spoils of apartheid, their descendants, the emerging black middle-class and the state have a moral obligation to provide for those still plagued by the legacies of apartheid, the poor and food insecure. But what happens if few honour their moral responsibility and others fail? The chapter argues that in order to mobilise sufficient funds for effective food security programmes, the state needs to establish a separate tax system which allocates specific amounts to each relatively wealthy person to contribute to this end. The chapter recommends that the affluent and the state should provide more than their expected allocation, especially as there is likelihood that some might resist this proposal. Moreover, while serving as a means to the ends of the food secure, the state and the affluent community should formulate an exit strategy for the have-nots to enable the majority to become self-sufficient.
This paper examines Aquinas’ reception of Peter Lombard's disputed thesis that the charity with which we love God and neighbour is not a virtue, but rather the Holy Spirit himself. Through a close reading of the four passages where Aquinas engages directly with the thesis, I show how this reception evolved over the course of his career, such that he gradually came to incorporate the trinitarian insight underlying Lombard's thesis into his doctrine of created charity. Although this doctrine is often viewed as an outright rejection of Lombard's thesis, I argue that it is in fact a substantial development of it that was made possible by Aquinas’ assimilation of Aristotelian naturalism.
Across numerous countries with advanced welfare states, governments have relied on a hybrid of publicly funded and delivered welfare services and voluntary charity to meet the needs of people in poverty. Driven by austerity and economic downturns, many scholars agree that governments are increasingly relying on charity as a response to poverty. Taking Australia as a case study, this article demonstrates how the decayed welfare state is not just about outsourcing welfare provision to charities, but also a part of a broader project to cultivate a society in which social problems are responded to through spontaneous, community-led initiatives, powered by the ethical commitment of everyday citizens. We show how this project produces poverty through welfare state retrenchment, whilst simultaneously cultivating charity through material and symbolic support from the state. This results in the construction of charity as an end in itself, with little consideration given to its effectiveness in alleviating poverty.
Chapter 3 considers the representation of the food gift in Shakespeare’s Pericles and Timon of Athens, and Massinger’s The Unnatural Combat. It argues that attention to hunger enables recognition of the role played by use value in gift exchange and places this in the context of the declining significance of traditions of hospitality in the period. It considers the recurrence of figures such as the discharged soldier and suggests that the soldier’s hunger constitutes a key means by which contemporary texts commented on the policies of pacifism carried out by monarchs such as James I. It emphasises the nostalgic dimension to representations of hospitality, but argues that this nostalgia frequently marks the system itself as untenable. It demonstrates that these plays manifest anxiety not simply at the scarcity and want which was produced by the nascent capitalist mode of production, but also at the problems of plenty and excess.
Money talks when it comes to global justice, no less than elsewhere. But what does money say? And does that have any legitimate role in realizing global justice? The persistence of injustice in a world dominated by the wealthy suggest they should not be relied upon. This chapter discusses the formative agency of the global rich, corporations, and foundations. The formative agency of the rich is exercised in both their political influence, in choosing recipients of their charity, and on what terms. Justice requires the democratic extension of formative agency beyond the rich and toward the poor. The influence of corporations is felt in the Sustainable Development Goals and in networked climate governance. So long as corporations are hard-wired for profit their formative agency should be restricted on questions of justice. Foundations are increasingly prominent in global governance; the Gates Foundation distributes over $4 billion per year. Embedding foundations in deliberative democratic relationships would advance democratic legitimacy and accountability, while bringing different sorts of knowledge to their activities. Deliberative accountability should apply to all wealthy actors, whose capacity to decide what global justice means and requires should be counterbalanced by an active role for citizens, the global poor, civil society, and international organizations.
Charity has a rich association with European international law. As a Christian virtue, charity drove the imperial exploits of Christian missions during the Age of Discovery in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. This is when the early Christian writers of a modern, European international law such as Francisco de Vitoria (1486–1546), Francisco Suárez (1548–1617), Richard Zouche (1590–1661), Hugo Grotius (1583–1645) and Cornelis van Bynkershoek (1673–1743) emerged, and the Peace of Westphalia is said to have established a law of nations amongst “a European society of sovereign states.” Christian charity, it was believed, offered non-Christian peoples in the “New World” eternal salvation, and it became a prime justification for the universalization of a European international law – all of which Anghie points out resulted from the process by which European doctrines and beliefs “were transferred to, or imposed upon, the non-European world, principally through the mechanism of colonialism.”
Rebecca Tomlin uses an archive of some three hundred alms petitions made c.1580–1600 at St Botolph’s Church, Aldgate, London to show how early modern compassion was an emotion that was governed by judgement. The chapter explores the strategies adopted by petitioners to move almsgivers to generosity; how almsgivers decided who deserved their charity, how petitions seek to move money from donor to petitioner, and how early modern charity is connected to compassion. Tomlin discusses how early modern compassion was an emotion that was governed by the giver’s judgement about the merit of the petitioner and the truth of his or her story, and how the identities of both the petitioner and the potential donor are mutually formed in the performance of petitioning. The chapter shows that the expression of generosity through cash was encouraged not by emotive descriptions of physical or emotional suffering but by focus on the economic consequences of disasters. Collections seem to gesture towards some kind of restitution of the pre-existing social order, rather than evoking lament and emotional empathy, although a sense of social solidarity also seems to have been operative when collections were gathered for local causes.
Toria Johnson interrogates the classification and portrayal of compassion in two major texts: the anonymous morality play Everyman (c. 1508) and Shakespeare’s King Lear (1606). Taking these plays as examples of pre- and post-Reformation approaches to compassionate interaction, she scrutinises a noticeable shift in attitudes towards the idea of pity, both as a fundamental human trait, and as an organising principle for human interaction. Whereas pre-Reformation plays like Everyman stress the volatility and unreliability of an emotion like pity – preferring instead the more established structure offered by charity – King Lear imagines a world without charity, and without the Church as an overseer of interpersonal exchange. Lear, she argues, reflects an emotional response to the Protestant revision of medieval penitential culture, and in so doing, Shakespeare imagines the possible consequences of England’s new emotional landscape. This chapter examines how the language, structure and ceremony of ‘compassion’ changed in the wake of the English Protestant Reformation, and how these shifts altered the way people experienced or understood the compassion of their communities.
This is a brief consideration of the cities of early medieval Italy and the role of urbanism in social and political forms. It summarises the main discoveries and claims of the book, situating the strands of research within different disciplinary contexts and in terms of broader questions about the early medieval past.
‘Oh! Cruel’, the first interlude, extends my analysis of sources to songs about or purportedly by singers, centring on the song ‘Oh! Cruel’ itself. The performance of this and other songs prompted especial anxieties around issues of charity and class relations. I contend that, though many of these songs share the stock characteristics and prejudices of the representations considered in Chapter 1, their crucial difference is that because they were actually performed by ballad-singers, they afforded the singer a degree of agency and self-expression denied them in other media. It is this sort of autonomous performance that I see as central to the role of the ballad-singer in society.
In this chapter, we study how the CPSU legacy affects the levels of income inequality in Russian regions. Equality is one of the key elements of the Communist ideology; yet after the collapse of the USSR former Communists were relatively successful in adjusting to the new market economy, which could make them less willing to support redistribution. Our analysis shows that, controlling for the differences in income per capita, the CPSU legacy is associated with lower levels of inequality. However, these differences are not driven by public redistribution or by charitable activity. We hypothesize that the effects of the CPSU legacy are connected to the development of informal networks in regional societies, which could serve as a redistribution device.
Theologians have recently shown interest in the work of Irish metaphysician William Desmond. A prevailing antimetaphysical sentiment may, however, discourage others from engaging his work. To allay concerns, this article brings Desmond into conversation with Jean-Luc Marion on the topic of divine revelation. The purpose is twofold. First, for those wary of metaphysics, this essay demonstrates that Desmond's metaxology evades Marion's critique and, more importantly, shows how the two thinkers share a “familial intimacy.” Despite the opposition between metaphysics and phenomenology, this intimacy renders them companion thinkers. Second, this companionship is theologically beneficial to Desmond. With Marion as guide, we consider how the concept of divine charity can be added into Desmond's metaphysics in what I call the passio caritatis, or “passion of charity.” The article concludes by suggesting how undergoing the passio caritatis effects a theological expansion of Desmond's metaphysics and puts it at the service of theological reflection.
Critics have long been puzzled by aspects of William Wordsworth’s “The Discharged Soldier” (1798), such as the abrupt opening, the soldier’s disinterest in telling his story in a genre that requires it, and the speaker’s lack of effusive sympathy. Wordsworth’s theory of desert provides a new way to understand the poem, and a key to understanding the poem’s interplay between capacity and aesthetics. The chapter focuses on the military body and, in particular, the stories about the acquisition of impairments that fictional disabled soldiers are required to tell. Disabled soldiers’ stories often make persuasive cases for desert (in that soldiers are deemed worthy of charity or reward).
Interpreters assume not only that the moral concepts of Proverbs constitute virtues as defined by Aristotle but also that theological concepts in Proverbs resemble Aquinas’ theological virtues: faith, hope and charity. According to the Summa Theologica, these virtues correspond to the human actions of intellectual assent to God, trust in him, and love for him. The questions asked are twofold: how does Proverbs portray human apprehension, trust, and love in or for God, and how do these conceptions relate to the theological virtues of Aquinas’ moral philosophy? I argue that Proverbs contains concepts that meet Aquinas’ criteria for theological virtue. The biblical concepts appear explicitly, as in passages that mention “hope” and “love,” and implicitly, as in passages that portray humans exercising faith in God without mentioning “faith.” I explore texts in Proverbs that most clearly feature the theological virtues (Proverbs 1-3; 30:1-9) and material that supports and qualifies my initial conclusions (Proverbs 10-29).
In addition to facilitating the accumulation of wealth, palace affiliation also created a group of women who had the resources and inclination to engage in charitable activities. A career in the harem underscored by material and moral patronage enabled many of these former slaves to amass the necessary resources—wealth, status, and networks—to be charitable. Thus, chapter 5 deals with another component of the material world, that of the charitable activities of female members of the imperial court. More specifically, the chapter examines their architectural patronage and endowments. In the previous chapters, palace women appeared as the receivers of patronage. In this chapter, they appear as dispensers of patronage as a result of the patronage that they themselves had received. The chapter endeavors to locate the impact of being affiliated with a particular household on the charitable activities of its members. It also aims to evaluate the possible implications that the charitable activities of this group of women had for the imperial court, the members of the imperial household, and Ottoman society. It demonstrates how female members of the imperial court engaged in charitable activities that served the interests of both Ottoman subjects and members of the imperial court, while also leaving their individual mark on the architectural, social, urban, religious, and intellectual landscape of various regions of the empire
This chapter discusses the collective basis for communal life in early modern England, showing that contemporaries were strongly averse to division (including religious conflict). Rather, Christian social values encouraged an organic sense of community built upon reciprocity and common interest. Paternalism simultaneously reinforced the social order while providing the poor with tangible benefits. Charitable giving was underwritten by Christian social codes. The clergy and gentry had powerful social expectations made of them, especially to provide for the poor. The collective consumption of alcohol underwrote many social rituals, forms of commensality and festivity, and much of the plebeian social world was centred upon the alehouse. Rituals such as Rogationtide, along with other forms of festivity and play, articulated powerful social norms.
This chapter discusses the widespread belief in early modern England that neighbourliness was dead and charity grown cold. It assesses the melancholy that was built on a nostalgic sense of lost social virtues. Yet, contradictorily, it shows that even as contemporaries lamented the end of neighbourhood, they simultaneously celebrated and asserted neighbourly values. The chapter therefore balances evidence for social atomization against ongoing investment by early modern people in Christian discourses of charity and good neighbourhood, which generated powerful senses of local reciprocities and continued social bonds that included gifts of cash, food and shelter to the poor; communal feasting and festivity; and Christian values of friendship.
Chapter 2 studies the movement of various material forms of medical knowledge about cinchona – bottled compound wines, or powdered bark – by setting out the structure, volume and reach of world commerce in cinchona. Based on trade statistics, pharmaceutical inventories and medical treatises as well as the extensive Spanish administrative record on the subject, the chapter charts the bark’s availability across the Atlantic World by means of commerce and contraband as well as concomitant, non-commercial forms of distribution – charitable giving, medical relief programmes and diplomatic gift exchange. Preparing the ground for subsequent chapters concerned with the movement of consumption practices and expertise in indications, it exposes and examines both the bark’s geographic reach, along the veins of Atlantic trade, proselytizing, and imperialism, and its more elusive social reach within consumer societies.
Scholars who favor shareholder primacy usually claim either that managers should not fulfill corporate duties of beneficence or that, if they are required to fulfill them, they do so by going against their obligations to shareholders. Distinguishing between structurally different types of duties of beneficence and recognizing the full force of the normative demands imposed on managers reveal that this view needs to be qualified. Although it is correct to think that managers, when acting on behalf of shareholders, are not required to fulfill wide duties of charity, they are nevertheless required to fulfill a variety of narrow duties of beneficence. What is more, the obligation to fulfill these duties arises precisely because they are acting on behalf of shareholders. As such, this article 1) refines our understanding of the duties of corporate beneficence and 2) helps to identify which duties of beneficence are imposed on managers when they are acting on behalf of shareholders.