Lehrbuch Der NationalÖkonomie / Teaching Guide to Economics Volume III/ Book 2: The Active Causes in the Ongoing Economic Process

Organizing labor and economics along occupational rather than class lines is an expression of solidarity that enhances occupations and industries in support of a national economy. Pesch regards this as natural and necessary in modern economies. Pesch argues that a living wage as well as labor organizations and unions are a natural right. The role of the state is to assist in the performance of tasks which the individual(s) cannot do completely on their own. In the particular book, Pesch clearly defines the Principle of Subsidiarity in its relationship to the nature of human society and economic order.


This is the first English translation of the works of Heinrich Pesch, SJ (1854-1926). Pesch, a German Jesuit scholar and economist, wrote the longest, most exhaustive economics text ever written, one that deserves to be regarded as a kind of Summa Economica. The five-volume Lehrbuch der Nationalökonomie examines all serious economic thinking up until Pesch’s time, culling what was deficient, retaining what was worthwhile, and filling in what its author perceived to be lacking. The result was a design for an economic system that is opposed to both classically liberal capitalism and state socialism, based instead on Aristotelian-Thomistic philosophical premises. Pesch developed many of the basic principles which emerged in the social encyclicals of the Catholic Church.

Table of Contents

The Active Causes in the Ongoing Economic Process

IV. Modern Occupational Organization

V. Organizations of Employers and Employees

VI. The State, the Local Community and Voluntary Organizations in the Service of the General Welfare