Cloister and society: Analyzing the public benefit of monastic and mendicant institutions

Guillermina Jasso

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    It has long been thought that religious orders, by their very existence (apart from any direct service such as teaching or nursing), enhance the secular social welfare. This paper reports theoretical predictions, derived from the postulates of comparison theory, concerning the existence of this public benefit of the cloister and the determinants of its magnitude, including the effects of economic inequality and of the societal valued goods. The basic predictions suggest further implications for the rates of vocations and defections, for state sympathies toward religious orders, and for the rise and development of monastic and mendicant institutions.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)109-136
    Number of pages28
    JournalThe Journal of Mathematical Sociology
    Issue number2
    StatePublished - May 1 1991


    • Theoretical prediction
    • comparison theory
    • economic inequality
    • religious orders
    • societal valuation of birth and wealth

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Algebra and Number Theory
    • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
    • Sociology and Political Science


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