Corruption as an Anthropological Problem. Reflections Based on the Papal Document on Transparency, Control and Competition in Public Life

Michał Wyrostkiewicz


Contemporary scientific research on corruption is increasingly confined to the economic dimension. This narrow point of view has led some scholars to see corruption as a factor contributing to social progress. Progress itself is equated with economic improvement and an increase in wealth. Such reasoning, however, appears incomplete and, consequently, does not correspond to the truth about society and man, especially his natural and deepest needs. A broader view of corruption, meaning one that goes beyond what is "quantifiable" and takes into account philosophical and theological arguments, clearly indicates that corruption is evil. This evil causes a corrupt person to ignore transcendent values and God. As a consequence, it is the cause of a man’s depersonalization, their "integral regression." In the light of the research carried out, the statement that corruption destroys the "social fabric" not only means the loosening of social relationships, but mainly destroys the person who is the basic unit of this "social fabric." Corruption destroys man and society. Recognizing it as a social good is the result of an "anthropological error." As a result, a theory built on the basis of such erroneous premises has the hallmarks of an ideology.


corruption, anthropology, social life, interdisciplinary, anthropological error

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