Compare and contrast modern definitions of philanthropy with colonial views of philanthropy. What are key similarities and differences? Are there elements of philanthropy that remain consistent throughout these periods of history? Your answer must have at least two citations and corresponding references – one from the relevant course text, and one from an academic journal article published within the past 5 – 7 years.

The Philanthropy Reader by Michael Moody and Beth Breeze

Classical Greeks would consider a person deficient in his philanthropia if he possessed only one aspect of it while fundamentally lacking in the others (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 31) 


Athenian conceptions of philanthropia were frequently informed by philosophical ideals (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 31) 

Sir Francis Bacon who was an English philosopher considered philanthropia to be synonymous with “goodness” and “affecting the weal of men”. Which is basically a habit of doing good (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 32) 

His conception of philanthropia and goodness means instilled habits of good behavior (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 32)
A dictionary published in London in 1755, Johnson’s dictionary defines philanthropy as simply “love of mankind; good nature” (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 32) 
Webster dictionary’s conception of philanthropy is “benevolence toward the whole human family” may be seen to take an important cue from a close associate of his in the Federalist Party, Alexander Hamilton (1757-1804) (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 33) 

“As the 19th century progressed, philanthropy became increasingly employed in reference to the many new charitable societies dedicated to social and political reform that arose after the American Revolution in the early American republic” (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 33) 

“Philanthropy also became increasingly employed in reference to the generous benefactions made to this new generation of charitable institution by the wealthy industrialists these revolutions helped produce” (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 33) 

Lester Salamon who is a professor at John Hopkins University, defines philanthropy as “the private giving of time or valuables (money, security, property) for public purposes” (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 33) 

“In the early 19th century, individuals transitioned from charity, understood as giving between individuals, to philanthropy, understood as an institutionally channeled humanitarian response to conditions of the poor” (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 34) 

“There is fundamental disagreement over: 

Whether philanthropy is voluntary, or whether it is compelled by factors such as moral restraints, social obligations, and the like
Whether philanthropy serves a public purpose, a public good, a charitable need, or simply a communicated want or desire 
Whether philanthropy is an intent to achieve a particular aim, is the actual attainment of that ain, or is just simply a private act of giving” (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 35) 

Philanthropy in an overall framework of meaning:

“Literal: encompassing references to the literal meaning of philanthropy in ancient Greek as the love of mankind 
Archaic: for usages now considered largely obsolete, such as those referring to philanthropy as the “love of god for humankind” or as being synonymous with “humanity” 
Ideal: to describe the attainment of ideal aims, goals, outcomes, or objectives in terms of meeting a need, attaining a good, and/or advancing human happiness and well-being 
Ontological: to describe an innate desire, moral sentiment, psychological predisposition, or other scuh aspect of human nature that impels people to want to help others
Volitional: to describe the good will, intent, or readiness to voluntarily help others
Actual: to describe an objective act, such as giving of money, time, or effort, to a charitable cause of public purpose 
Social: to describe a relation, movement, organization, or other such social entity larger than the individual that embodies an explicity defined charitable cause or good” (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 35)

“Philanthropy has had a variety of differing shades of meaning in its historical, contemporary, common, and academic usage” (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 35)

“There are significant parallels in the evolution of the use and meaning of philanthropy between the classical and the modern eras: in both, philanthropy is initially employed as a specialized theological and philosophical term by an educated elite to describe a catalyst of human progress; later, it is adopted by ever-wider circles in civil society to describe a range of more conventional and ostensible public virtues” ((Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 36) 

“The meaning of philanthropy considerably narrowed during the 20th century, both in its common and academic usages, to refer almost exclusively to charitable giving (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 36)

“Meaning of philanthropy has also evolved and altered in different ways over time, within and across different contexts (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 37)

“The concept of philanthropy has been modified in accordance with the evolution of societies, economies, and politics (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 38)

“Over the next decade ‘philanthropy’, both the term and the activity, became fashionable – an ‘innovative, growing, influential and high performing sector’ as Philanthropy Australia’s website now describes it” (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 39)

In the 18th century, philanthropy became the work of committees of volunteers coming together to help strangers (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 39)

“A long history of philanthropy sheds new light on social policy as it developed in this settler society.” (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 40)

“Philanthropy offers the opportunity for these connections to be made. It not only provided care for those overlooked by the state; it was also centered in maintaining the structures of thought and practice that perpetuated the system” (Moody & Breeze, 2016, p. 40)

Celebrity Philanthropy in China

In current society, technology and social networking has flourished over the years 

“Findings suggest that philanthropic engagement was more common in the center of the social network; under normative influence, a celebrity was more likely to engage in philanthropic activities if other members within the social network were active in philanthropic engagement; and, the effect of normative influence was stronger for celebrities who were positioned at the center of a social network than those who were positioned at the periphery” (Yang, Zhou, & Zhang, 2018)

“Nevertheless, celebrity philanthropy leverages “fame” and helps raise public awareness of philanthropic causes through media publicity. Celebrity philanthropy plays an important role in popularizing humanitarian values and global citizenship: by raising the public profile of a given social issue or its host organization or both, by attracting extra media coverage and new audiences, and by demystifying social issues, encouraging sponsorship, and raising public awareness (Bishop and Green 2008).” (Cited in Yang, Zhou, & Zhang, 2018)

“Given the above integration, understanding how the “social network effect” drives philanthropic behavior is an urgent task. Numerous studies have assessed the relationship between a person’s philanthropic behavior and social network as a component of social capital.” (Yang, Zhou, & Zhang, 2018)

“According to Jeffreys (2015), the word “philanthropy” originally referred to God’s love of humankind, but now it refers to the secular love of humanity as demonstrated through “the disposition or active effort to promote the happiness and well-being of others,” especially by donating time, money, goods, or services to “good causes.” Practitioners usually describe modern philanthropy in positive terms as referring to the development of the not-for-profit or non-governmental sector and hence as an institutionally channeled and business-style response to the “big” issues affecting humankind (Bishop 2007; Payton and Moody 2008).” (Cited in Yang, Zhou, & Zhang, 2018)

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