The Responsibilities Of Wealth

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"In sum, this volume is a thoughtful exploration of both the past and the future of philanthropic theory. Recommended highly... " —Library Journal

" Together, these thoughtful essays convey both the scope and complexity of the moral, philosophical, and practical issues surrounding the sources, methods, and consequences of philanthropy." —The Journal of American History

Andrew Carnegie enjoined his fellow millionaires "to help those who will help themselves." Do the rich of today have responsibilities toward society in the use of their wealth for the public good? Commentators from Carnegie to some of our leading scholars of philanthropy explore that question. Topics include the "ethics of responsibility," liberal and corporate philanthropy, the contrast between Jane Addams’s and Carnegie’s views of the responsibilities of wealth, and the religious roots of philanthropy.

Indiana University Press

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This collection opens with industrialist Andrew Carnegie's 1889 essay, ``The Gospel of Wealth,'' which defined philanthropy as a responsible use of wealth for the public good and urged his fellow millionaires to follow his lead in giving. The remaining seven essays question this American ideal, both in its historical context and in light of contemporary society. Has the rise of the welfare state rendered the work of foundations obsolete? Should Carnegie's appeal now be directed to the managers of large corporations? What is the relationship between contemporary secular philanthropy and the religious institutions of this country? These and other questions are answered in a style that is both readable and scholarly. Jane Addams's vision of a philanthropy that demanded personal encounters between the wealthy and the poor is described in Louise Knight's essay and provides an interesting contrast to Carnegie's emphasis on distribution of funds. For Addams, wealth was not enough; the gift of self had to follow. In sum, this volume is a thoughtful exploration of both the past and the future of philanthropic theory. Recommended highly for both public and academic libraries.-- Mary Jane Ballou, Ford Fdn. Lib., New York
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780253312792
  • Publisher: Indiana University Press
  • Publication date: 3/1/1992
  • Series: Philanthropic and Nonprofit Studies Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 160
  • Product dimensions: 5.25 (w) x 8.25 (h) x 0.64 (d)

Meet the Author

DWIGHT F. BURLINGAME is Associate Director for Academic Programs and Research at the Indiana University Center on Philanthropy.

Indiana University Press

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Table of Contents


The Gospel of Wealth: Andrew Carnegie

Andrew Carnegie and His Gospel of Philanthropy: A study in the Ethics of Responsibility
Barry D. Karl

Aristotle and the Ethics of Philanthropy: Albert Anderson

Philanthropy under Capitalism: Jonathan Riley

A Business Man’s Philanthropic Creed: A Centennial Perspective on Carnegie’s Gospel of Wealth: Kenneth Fox

Jan Addam’s Views on the Responsibilities of Wealth: Louise W. Knight

God and Money: Robert L. Payton


Indiana University Press

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