It appears that from Christianism there was a split between those who decided to emphasize the Christian idea of charity (love) (like Thomas More, Meslier, Saint-Simon, Cabet, Polanyi), which gave soil for socialism and communism (applying the social model of the monasteries to the whole society), and those who decided to emphasize the Christian idea of freedom and dignity (imago Dei), which gave soil to the protestant reformation, and liberalism (William of Ockham, Thomas Aquinas, School of Salamanca, Adam Smith, John Locke, Richard Cantillon).

Has this been recognized explicitly by some researchers? I am not saying that the only source of socialism and liberalism is religion/Christianity.


Ehrhardt, E. (1929). Idéologie communiste et christianisme. Revue d'Histoire et de Philosophie religieuses, 9(4), 341-365.

Hughes, G. (2011). The concept of dignity in the universal declaration of human rights. Journal of Religious Ethics, 39(1), 1-24.

McCloskey, D. N. (2016). Bourgeois equality: How ideas, not capital or institutions, enriched the world. University of Chicago Press.

Vorster, N. (2012). A theological perspective on human dignity, equality and freedom. Verbum et Ecclesia, 33(1), 1-6.

  • 1
    Tom Holland More accessible perhaps in Scrivener
    – Rushi
    Commented May 25 at 11:18
  • @Rushi Not sure that both two are extremely scientific...
    – Starckman
    Commented May 25 at 11:33
  • Not sure you asked about scientists 🤣. Tom Holland is a historian and novelist. Scrivener is quite explicitly a Christian evangelist. I mention him only because he gives an easier and smaller introduction than Holland's massive book! Holland is (IMHO) very encyclopediac. But no, he's not a scientist hes not "scientific". And I dont even know what if would mean to address questions like this scientifically?!
    – Rushi
    Commented May 25 at 11:50
  • @Rushi "Not sure you asked about scientists 🤣." --> "recognized explicitly by some researchers?". Tom Holland is a historian" he did not obtained his phd. He is an author. Those sources are interesting, especially because they are closed to Christianity as Christians themselves. "And I dont even know what if would mean to address questions like this scientifically?!" Like for instance Larry Siedentop
    – Starckman
    Commented May 25 at 12:10
  • @Starckman, not all researchers are scientists. This question is going to be mostly addressed by people in the humanities (including philosophy), not the sciences. And someone doesn't have to have a PhD to be worth listening to. Not that I'm endorsing either author--I'm unfamiliar with either. Commented May 25 at 12:36


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