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This website attempts to gather a few threads dealing with the common good in today's context. After an introduction, three pages discuss different aspects. First, concepts relating to Human Dignity are presented, highlighting the value of the human person. Next, political apects are discussed in the context of Social Responsibility. Lastly, Intermediate Organizations are taken up, making the point that without neglecting the individual or the political, a great deal can be accomplished through associations and group activites. In practice, our four pages follow a mostly historical sequence, and a Timeline situates the primary thinkers that we are quoting.
Walzer points out the particular value of these groups for those in the margins of society: "Dominated and deprived individuals are likely to be disorganized as well as impoverished, whereas poor people with strong families, churches, unions, political parties, and ethnic alliances are not likely to be dominated or deprived for long." In the last page we will present several examples of beneficial groups.
We can reach very far back in seeking the social and political roots of Western civilization. The writings of the Greek philosopher Aristotle (384-322 BCE) and the Roman senator and philosopher Cicero (106-43 BCE) can be considered foundational documents. They both incorporated material from other authors, but their formulations have been the most influential. Cicero provides an excellent description of the human social nature:
Political and social views from the end of the Roman Empire to the Renaissance consisted mostly of a tension between an absolute ruler and the people at large. Some rulers were more benevolent towards the people than others and wars were a continuous obstacle to social stability. A number of thinkers provided an evolving of social and political philosophy that was not much applied in practice but contributed to the heritage of knowledge. An interesting thinker was the French intellectual Baron of Montesquieu (1689-1755) who looked to the organized action of noblemen as an intermediate power between the monarch and the people so as to limit concentrated power.
The Age of Enlightenment is a term used to describe a phase in the history of Western civilization, during the late seventeenth and the eighteenth centuries, that emphasized rational thought and empirical observation. There is general agreement that the sociopolitical view that has held until modern times was largely constructed during this period. This was particularly true of the Scottish Enlightenment, since it had a direct influence in the democratic thought of the United States, and from there this influence spread to the other democracies in the Western hemisphere.
 Michael Walzer, “The Concept of Civil Society” in Toward a Global Civil Society (New York: Berghahn Books, 2002), 7.
 Michael Walzer, “The Concept of Civil Society” , 7,16.
 Michael Walzer, “The Concept of Civil Society”, 19.
 Dagoberto Valdés Hernández et al., Etica y Cívica, my translation (Pinar del Río, Cuba: Ediciones Convivencia, 2014), 20.
 Ibid., Etica y Cívica, 107-108.
 Cicero, Three Books of Offices, tr. Cyrus R. Edmonds (New York: Harper and Brothers, 1892), 14-15.
[7 Baron de Montesquieu, The Spirit of Laws, Thomas Nugent, trans., (London, George Bells and Sons, 1897).
 Douglas Sloan, The Scottish Enlightenment and the American College Ideal (New York: Teachers College Press, Columbia University, 1971), 122-138.