Modernism and Business Ethics

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In the article, Modernism, Christianity, and Business Ethics: A Worldview Perspective, the authors shared their worldview perspective of how modernism shapes the beliefs and approaches to ethics in business and academia (Kim, Fisher & McCalman, 2009, p. 115). Also, they pointed out the limitations of modernism in addressing moral issues and religion. So, they introduced the Christian worldview as an alternative approach in examining ethical issues in business (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 115).

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The authors discussed the moral issues and included in the debate the corporate social responsibility and the introduction of business ethics in management programs (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 115). The outcome of the discussion regarding the attempt to integrate spirituality and religion into business practice was intriguing to them (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 115).  They explained that religion and spirituality literally banished from modern forms of institutional organization (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 115).

The authors explored the idea of considering the Christian worldview as an alternative to the dominant modernist paradigm as a useful ethical perspective in the realm of business (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 115). They discussed the merits of integrating religion with corporate practice as many business leaders basing their business decisions on their religious convictions (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 115). They examined the worldviews of modernism, post-modernism, and Christianity. The authors stated that everyone has convictions about how reality functions and how a person should live (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 116). 

In modern worldview, reality, knowledge, and morality are founded in science, human reasoning, and objective evidence (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 116).   In post-modern worldview, the nature of reality, knowledge, and morality is self-defined and self-referential (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 116).  The authors expressed the ethical blind spots of modernism that cause problems (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 116).  They introduced Christianity as an alternative worldview into business ethics as Christianity is the major religion on the West and serves as an ethical framework for many in their personal lives (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 116).

The basis of Christian worldview is found in the Scriptures and the culture that was born from the early church (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 117).  In modernism, nothing exists outside the material world, and they reject the possibility that there is more to the world than what we can directly access with our senses (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 117). Christianity is no longer compatible with truth, and truth resided in the scientific community, in a closed natural system of cause and effect (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 117). As a result, Christianity was eliminated from the public institutions.

Analysis and Evaluation

The author’s argument regarding the limitations of modernism on business ethics is convincing, namely, moral relativism and a materialistic focus regarding ethical behavior (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 119). In modernism, good business ethics are valued so it will not interfere with the economic functioning of society, and practicality became the sole moral criterion (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 118). This reasoning is disturbing because the end goal becomes self-centered, focusing on reducing employee turnover, increasing productivity and profitability (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 118).  Christian worldview is a great alternative approach in practicing good business ethics. As the authors wrote, Without God, the purpose of work or vocation changed to personal achievement, material possessions, and status (Kim et. al, 2009, p. 118).  The Scripture provides good business guide and strong foundation in practicing high ethical business standards.

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Modernism And Business Ethics. (2020, Mar 23). Retrieved February 9, 2023 , from

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