Event—Scholarly Seminars

Aidan Beatty, University of Pittsburgh


The Problem of Capitalism in Irish Catholic Social Thought, 1922-1950, Aidan Beatty

The Catholic Church in twentieth-century Ireland was infamously anti-communist. In this paper, I look at the other side of this equation: what did the leading savants of Irish Catholicism think of capitalism? Where anti-communism often goes hand-in-glove with an uncritical support for capitalism, Irish Catholic thinkers were often equally suspicious of both communism and capitalism. And their opposition to both economic ideologies drew on similar rationales; a hostility to anything "foreign", a fear that global culture would destroy traditional Irish culture, anti-materialism, a desire to return to an idealized medieval past, and pervasive antisemitic paranoia.

Respondent: Mary McCain, DePaul University