Keith Tribe’s new translation presents Economy and Society as it stood when Max Weber died. One of the world’s leading experts on Weber’s thought, Tribe has produced a clear and faithful translation that will become the definitive English edition of one of the few indisputably great intellectual works of the past 150 years.
Can politics be studied scientifically, and if so, how? Assuming it is impossible to justify values by human reason alone, social science has come to consider an unreflective relativism the only viable basis, not only for its own operations, but for liberal societies more generally. Although the experience of the sixties has made social scientists more sensitive to the importance of values, it has not led to a fundamental reexamination of value relativism, which remains the basis of contemporary social science. Almost three decades after Leo Strauss's death, Nasser Behnegar offers the first sustained exposition of what Strauss was best known for: his radical critique of contemporary social science, and particularly of political science.
Behnegar's impressive book argues that Strauss was not against the scientific study of politics, but he did reject the idea that it could be built upon political science's unexamined assumption of the distinction between facts and values. Max Weber was, for Strauss, the most profound exponent of values relativism in social science, and Behnegar's explication artfully illuminates Strauss's critique of Weber's belief in the ultimate insolubility of all value conflicts.
Strauss's polemic against contemporary political science was meant to make clear the contradiction between its claim of value-free premises and its commitment to democratic principles. As Behnegar ultimately shows, values—the ethical component lacking in a contemporary social science—are essential to Strauss's project of constructing a genuinely scientific study of politics.
Max Weber was one of the most influential and creative intellectual forces of the twentieth century. In his methodology of the social sciences, he both exposed the flaws and solidified the foundations of the German historical tradition. Throughout his life, he saw bureaucracy as a serious obstacle to cultural vitality but as an inescapable part of organizational rationality. And in his most famous essay, on the Protestant ethic, he uncovered the psychological underpinnings of capitalism and modern occupational life.
This searching work offers the first comprehensive introduction to Weber's thought for students and newcomers. Fritz Ringer locates Weber in his historical context, relating his ideas to the controversies and politics of his day. Ringer also considers the importance of Weber to contemporary life, discussing his insights into the limits of scholarly research and the future of Western capitalist societies. Weber, Ringer reminds us, believed in democracy, liberalism, and fundamental human rights; his ethic of responsibility remains as vital to our historical moment as it was to his own.
A concise and incisive look at the man and personality behind the thought, Max Weber is a masterful outing in intellectual biography and social theory.
Max Weber: An Introduction to His Life and Work has established itself as the standard short introduction in German to the work of Max Weber, and appears here for the first time in English translation. Sociologist Dirk Käsler has a profound sense of Weber's writings, yet manages to make Weber's ideas accessible to the beginner.
Käsler offers a comprehensive account of Weber's views, giving attention both to the context in which Weber produced his most significant contributions to social science, and to the changes involved in his work over the course of his career. This volume also serves as an introduction to the controversies that Weber's writings have stimulated, from the time of their first appearance to the present day.
This book will be of vital interest to anyone concerned with Max Weber and will undoubtedly become the leading student text on Weber in the English-speaking world.
A major work of German historiography, this comprehensive account of Weber's political views and activities reveals that, paradoxically, Weber was at once an ardent liberal and a determined German nationalist and imperialist. Wolfgang J. Mommsen shows the important links between these seemingly conflicting positions and provides a critique of Weber's sociology of power and his concept of democratic rule.
First published in German in 1959, Max Weber and German Politics appeared in a revised edition in 1974 and became available in an English translation only in 1984. In writing this work, Mommsen drew extensively on Weber's published and unpublished essays, newspaper articles, memoranda, and correspondence.
The revival of historical sociology in recent decades has largely neglected the contributions of Max Weber. Yet Weber's writings offer a fundamental resource for analyzing problems of comparative historical development. Stephen Kalberg rejects the view that Weber's historical writings consist of an ambiguous mixture of fragmented ideal types on the one hand and the charting of vast processes of rationalization and bureaucracy on the other. On the contrary, Weber's substantive work offers a coherent and distinctive model for comparative analysis. A reconstruction of Weber's comparative historical method, Kalberg argues, uncovers a sophisticated outlook that addresses problems of agency and structure, multiple causation, and institutional interpretation. Kalberg shows how such a representation of Weber's work casts a direct light upon issues of pressing importance in comparative historical studies today. Weber addresses in a forceful way the whole range of issues confronted by the comparative historical enterprise. Once the full analytical and empirical power of Weber's historical writings becomes clear, Weber's work can be seen to generate procedures and strategies appropriate to the study of present day as well as past social processes. Written in an accessible and engaging fashion, this book will appeal to students and professionals in the areas of sociology, anthropology, and comparative history.
At a time when historical and cultural analyses are being subjected to all manner of ideological and disciplinary prodding and poking, the work of Max Weber, the brilliant social theorist and one of the most creative intellectual forces in the twentieth century, is especially relevant. In this significant study, Fritz Ringer offers a new approach to the work of Weber, interpreting his methodological writings in the context of the lively German intellectual debates of his day. According to Ringer, Weber was able to bridge the intellectual divide between humanistic interpretation and causal explanation in historical and cultural studies in a way that speaks directly to our own time, when methodological differences continue to impede fruitful cooperation between humanists and social scientists. In the place of the humanists' subjectivism and the social scientists' naturalism, Weber developed the flexible and realistic concepts of objective probability and adequate causation.
Grounding technical theories in specific examples, Ringer has written an essential text for all students of Weber and of social theory in the humanities and social sciences. Fully reconstructed, Max Weber's methodological position in fact anticipated the most fruitful directions in our own contemporary philosophies of the cultural and social sciences. Ringer's conceptualization of Weber's approach and achievement elucidates Weber's reconciliation of interpretive understanding and causal explanation and shows its relevance to intellectual life and culture in Weber's own time and in ours as well.
This selection from Max Weber's writings presents his variegated work from one central focus, the relationship between charisma on the one hand, and the process of institution building in the major fields of the social order such as politics, law, economy, and culture and religion on the other. That the concept of charisma is crucially important for understanding the processes of institution building is implicit in Weber's own writings, and the explication of this relationship is perhaps the most important challenge which Weber's work poses for modern sociology.
Max Weber on Charisma and Institution Building is a volume in "The Heritage of Sociology," a series edited by Morris Janowitz. Other volumes deal with the writings of George Herbert Mead, William F. Ogburn, Louis Wirth, W. I. Thomas, Robert E. Park, and the Scottish Moralists—Adam Smith, David Hume, Adam Ferguson, and others.
Concentrating on Weber's engagement with political issues and their influence over his more theoretical concepts, Mommsen offers a critical analysis of Weber's notion of democracy, distinguishing its liberal and elitist features.
Religion, Order, and Law
David Little University of Chicago Press, 1984 Library of Congress BR757.L66 1984 | Dewey Decimal 306.6
"The issue of the Protestant ethic and the spirit of capitalism has been debated endlessly, but few scholars have seriously continued Weber's own research into the Reformation sources of seventeenth-century England. David Little's study was one of the first to do so, and remains an important contribution."—Guenther Roth, University of Washington