Date of Award

Spring 1957

Document Type

Thesis

Department

Theology

First Advisor

Rev. John O'Connor

Abstract

The purpose of this thesis is to inquire into the meaning of the term Social Justice, as used by Pope Pius XI in his encyclical, Quadragesimo Anno.

In the course of the past six years, three interesting books have appeared on the subject of the meaning of Social Justice.

Dr. Newman, who writ his thesis in Louvain, France, has defined Social Justice thus: "As a virtue, it is best defined as that disposition of the will which inclines individuals and social groups in general, to work for the common good of the community of which they are a part."

Father Drummond, in his work, Social Justice, defines it as: "A special species of justice, distinct from commutative, legal and distributive, which requires that material goods, even privately owned, shall serve the common use of all men."

According to Father William Ferree, who wrote his book at Catholic University in Washington, D.C., Social Justice is the organizing action of man for the sake of the common good.

We notice at once that which the three give definitions of Social Justice not usually found in our texts on Ethics, yet they do not altogether agree on what Social Justice means.

This thesis, therefore, confining itself chiefly to the Encyclical Quadragesimo Anno is an attempt to discover what Pius XI actually said about Social Justice in this letter to Christians of the world.

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