Max Weber laid the foundations for the meaning of ‘charisma’ in modern secular usage. This new volume argues for the importance of the ‘charismatic principle’ in history, economics and society.

This volume brings together a number of contributors at the cross section between economics, theology, sociology and politics in order to set a research agenda for the following issues:

  • What does it means to have a ‘charism’? How does it work in society? How might one distinguish a ‘charism’ from a talent? Are ‘charism’s given only to "special" people, or are they also present in ordinary people? Is a ‘charism’ necessarily associated with religion, or, is it, as we submit, possible to imagine ‘charisms’ at work within a secular perspective?
  • Which are the principle perspectives of the role of ‘charisms’ in social history? How have the ‘charisms’ of noted personalities (e.g., Benedict, Francis, Gandhi) changed economic and social history?
  • What insights might be drawn from ‘civil charisms’ such as the cooperative movement, non-profit organizations, social economy, and values-based organizations?

This book seeks to answer these questions through the employment of an interdisciplinary perspective, which examines the theme of the charismatic principle in social life in different fields of application.

chapter 1|19 pages

Economy of life

Charismatic dynamics and the spirit of gift
ByAdrian Pabst

chapter 4|17 pages

Dr Martin Luther King and the American civil rights movement

Charismatic and institutional perspectives
ByIan Weinstein

chapter 5|19 pages

Charism and institution

An organizational theory case study of the Economy of Communion
ByJeanne Buckeye, John Gallagher

chapter 6|11 pages

Benedictine tradition and good governance

Emil Inauen, Bruno S. Frey, Katja Rost and Margit Osterloh
ByEmil Inauen, Bruno S. Frey, Katja Rost, Margit Osterloh

chapter 7|18 pages

Opus Dei: prayer or labor?

The spirituality of work in Saints Benedict and Escrivá
ByJames B. Murphy

chapter 8|39 pages

Values-based enterprises

The good practices of Italian SMEs, passionately committed to people, environment and community
ByMara Del Baldo