Max Weber

Topics: Max Weber, Sociology, Bureaucracy Pages: 8 (2319 words) Published: December 28, 2012
Introduction of Max Webber:

ax Webber was born in April 21, 1864 at Erfurt, Prussia (Germany). He was German sociologist and political economist who profoundly influenced social theory, social research and discipline of sociology itself. Webber is often cited with Emile Durkheim and Karl Marx as one of the three principle architects of Modern Social Science. Max Webber was a sociologist and political economist known for describing the protestant ethic and for helping to found the German Democratic Party after First World War. Max Webber’s occupation was Educator, Philosopher, Scholar, Journalist, Sociologist, and Academic Author.
Webber was son of a wealthy liberal politician and Calvinist mother. Webber left home to enroll at university of Heidelberg as law student in 1982. After a year of military service he transferred to university of Berlin at the same time with his studies, he worked as junior barrister. In 1986 Webber passed the examination for Referendar (Comparable to the bar association examination in British and American legal systems). Throughout the late 1880’s Webber continued his study of law and history. He earned his law doctorate in 1889 by writing a dissertation on legal history. Webber joins the University of Berlin’s faculty, lecturing and consulting for government. Webber with his wife moved to Freiburg in1894. Where Webber was appointed as professor of economics at university, before accepting the same position at university of Heidelberg in 1896. He returned scholarship in 1903 and wrote the protestant Ethic and Spirit of capitalism. Webber argued against Germany’s First World War goals. He died on 14 June, 1920 in Munich (Germany) in age of 56.

Major Contribution:
Webber was one of the 20th century writers “arguing with the ghost of Marx”. There are four major themes in his study of society.
1) Religion and class as the key dynamic factors that influence society. He agreed with Marx that ‘class’ as ‘political economic power’ was a major factor in the historical development of ‘modern society’. However he disagreed that ‘class’ was the only institution that dominated the development of modern society. Webber believed the cultural factors, especially religion was also important. However, Webber didn’t argue that religion was the cause of capitalism fitted together and developed in interaction with each other. So did not argue that religion created capitalism. 2) Class and Inequality: Class, Status and Power:

i. Whilst he also agreed with Marx that ownership of capital or labor separated the two major classes of society, he also argued that social inequality in modern society was more complicated than this. ii. He argues that difference in the amount of social power or status differences (that is the amount of admiration or respect we have) are also important aspects o inequality in modern societies. iii. He argues with Marx too about political power. Webber believed that modern society was dominated, not only by owners of capital, but also by those with political power. He includes here elected politicians but also (and especially) people who have bureaucratic power. He sees bureaucracy as the major of power in modern society. 3) Bureaucracy and Rationality:

He argued that modern society is distinguished from pre modernism by the way we think, feel and operate in the world. For Webber the key contrast is that we privilege rational thinking above traditional thinking. Bureaucracies are the most important social institutions creating modern society because they are predominantly based on rationality. ‘What works more effectively’ not ‘how did our fathers do it’ is the major guide for modern organizations in Education, Health, Politics and business. 4) The importance of...
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