The Moral Economy and Islamic Economics: How Does ‘Universal Man’ Enter Future Discourse?


  • Mohd Mahyudi Mohd Yusop International Islamic University Malaysia, Malaysia



Moral economy, Islamic moral economy, Islamic economics, Universal man, Public policy


Since Thompson (1971) introduced the phrase ‘moral economy’, its historical evolution has seen entries in a wide array of fields; including history, anthropology, political science and economics. Starting primarily with welfare state policy discussions, the neologism has received sustained attention from economists, despite the lack of consensus on how best to define and use it. The moral deficiency and greed factors behind the recent global financial crises have also stimulated moral economy discourse. Interestingly, Islamic economists claim that Islamic economics is in fact the Islamic version of moral economy, represented by the phrase ‘Islamic moral economy’ (IME). Therefore, this qualitative paper makes comparisons between the conventional moral economy and IME that highlight their relative visibility status. Later, we discuss another neologism; that is ‘universal man’, as proposed by Mahyudi and Abdul Aziz (2017). This inclusion is relevant in light of effective public policy formulation. Thus, this paper also seeks to determine the role of the universal man concept in the shared discourse of Islamic and conventional moral economy. The probable influence of this neologism in enriching future discourse on moral economy is explored. The implication of this paper lies in the aspect of public policy design where it may help in proposing strategies to improve the functioning of a moral economy.


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How to Cite

Mohd Yusop, M. M. (2021). The Moral Economy and Islamic Economics: How Does ‘Universal Man’ Enter Future Discourse?. International Journal of Economics, Management and Accounting, 29(2), 361–379.




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