Friday, 4 January 2019

Tiziana Faitini presents a working paper on 'Shaping the Profession. Some Thoughts on the Moral Problematization of Professional Activities in the Counter-Reformation'

This paper investigates the theorisation of the duties belonging to different – lay and professional – conditions, elaborated upon by post-Tridentine moral theology, in order to contribute to the genealogy of the modern concept and experience of the profession, and, more generally, to modern economic and political rationality. It focuses particularly on how work and professional activities are dealt with in Juan Azor’s Institutiones morales, Hermann Busenbaum’s Medulla theologiae moralis and Alfonso de Liguori’s Theologia moralis, between the early 17th and mid-18th Centuries. After an introduction on the rationale of the research (§1), and some quick historical remarks on the sources and the theological elaboration on the states of life (§2), the paper examines the specific prescriptions imposed by these sources on professional activities in their discussions of the Third Commandment, and the obligations to rest and fast on certain days (§3). A brief analysis of the paragraphs explicitly devoted to the duties of professionals (law and health professionals in particular) (§4) precedes some final observations about the post-Tridentine model of profession, and its influence on the moral and socio-political valorisation of professional activities (§5).

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