Commerce and the Great Theological Experiment

in The Theological Basis of Liberal Modernity in Montesquieu's “Spirit of the Laws”

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print May 2010 | ISBN: 9780226645490
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226645520 | DOI:
Commerce and the Great Theological Experiment

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This chapter analyzes commerce as an engine of religious liberation, the rational redemption of Christianity, commerce and despotism, and Montesquieu's “prophetic vision.” Commerce contributes greatly to the transformation of Christianity that Montesquieu observes occurring under the aegis of modern philosophy and politics. Montesquieu's judgment on the political dimensions of Christianity, especially in his own time, is not by any means simply negative. He celebrates those features of Christian belief that can be brought into harmony with the norms of his political science.

Keywords: religious liberation; Christianity; despotism; prophetic vision; England

Chapter.  15454 words. 

Subjects: Political Theory

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