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A Margin Note on Medieval Thought About Money and The Interest Rate

digital A Margin Note on Medieval Thought About Money
and The Interest Rate
Article
journal RIVISTA INTERNAZIONALE DI SCIENZE SOCIALI
issue RIVISTA INTERNAZIONALE DI SCIENZE SOCIALI - 2017 - 1
title A Margin Note on Medieval Thought About Money and The Interest Rate
author
publisher Vita e Pensiero
format Article | Pdf
online since 04-2017
issn 0035-676X (print) | 1827-7918 (digital)
€ 6.00

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In the medieval period, the issue of interest was highly significant in economic discussion. Despite a shared vision of money, the Islamic world and Christian West in the late middle ages had different attitudes to the legitimacy of interest. This divergence has been interpreted by neo-Institutionalist theory in the light of the religious institutions’ power to influence the economic side of society. Conclusions differ if the analysis comes from a Veblenian Institutionalist perspective. This approach in fact shows that while in Christian Europe interest rate theory developed hand-in-hand with the unfolding of the multiple functions of money in a society gradually evolving towards capitalism and with the secularization of economics, in the Islamic West, partly due to a different development of the socio-economic fabric, there were contrasting outcomes both in the role played by monetary financial institutions and in the developments of theoretical thought.