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The Question of a Contemporary Greek-Orthodox Economic Ethic

Georgios Trantas

Abstract


It is broadly acknowledged that the Weberian thesis established a clear theoretical background as regards the foundations of capitalism. Moreover, in the meanwhile capitalism has become the universal economic standard, a sine qua non, but that does not necessarily entail that cultures that do not adhere to the corresponding Protestant Ethic find it easy to subscribe to its fundamentals that are the constitutive, foundational elements of the capitalist model. Therewith emerges the issue of a non-Protestant equivalent, and specifically a Greek-Orthodox antipode, particularly in light of the Greek debt crisis, which gave rise to Eurosceptic social and ecclesiastical attitudes. Hence, the main endeavour of this paper is to identify this vacuum and shed some light on its particulars, given that for the most part it is moral platitudes and generalisations that one came across in the public sphere, devoid of concrete arguments as regards the application of a presumed Greek-Orthodox economic ethic within the contemporary socio-political context. In the greater scheme of things then, the question is whether an alternative as such could be even possible and plausible.

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