Max Weber

Resume of Max Weber’s Politics as a Vacation Essay

September 21, 2021 by Essay Writer

Max Weber, the author of the essay under consideration, admits that the ethos of politics should be considered as a cause and tries to explain what calling politics may fulfil “quite independently of its goals within the total ethical economy of human conduct – which is, so to speak, the ethical locus where politics is at home.” (Weber, 117) Weber does not want to concentrate on politics only in order to present a worth material to his reader.

He analyses ethics and tries to unite it to politics by means of their distinctive features. One of the means, which are inherent to politics, is violence. It is crucially important for power to be backed up by any kind of violence in order to control, to set the necessary rules, and be effective from different perspectives.

Revolutions and wars – this is what can provide the development of power through the whole world. People cannot present and prove their points of view without certain amount of violence. However, all those actions taken to win wars or revolutions should be analyzed from an ethical perspective. Only this way will help to achieve the necessary results properly, without extra sacrifices and even death.

Weber is eager to answer rather different questions in his essay: what differs the rule of the worker’s council from the rule of some other person, who holds power; why the wars, which lead to status quo, are needed; what are the reasons of the revolutions, people have to participate in; what the consequences of all those actions are, and what kind of future our next generation will get. These and many other questions are posed by Weber in his work.

To answer all these questions, Weber offers to take into consideration the standpoints of many people and decide what idea is more appropriate; to become fee from falsification that surrounds us; and to use real life examples as the best evidences. People need to hear and analyze lots of cases in order to be completely sure about the decision made. This is why the author wants to present several ways to persuade the reader and present various arguments in his text.

If he talks about politics in the work, it is possible that he considers men to be the vast majority of the readers. This is why the chosen by him example is good indeed. When a man prefer one woman to another, he does not want to find enough reasons to explain why; just simple phrases like she is not worth my love or something take place.

This is why legitimacy means nothing for men in such cases, and this change does not correspond to any ethical principle. So, in order to be ethically proper and not to be put under a threat, it is better to find several legitimate reasons and present them. If such evidences take place in politics, the chosen way will be approved.

In order to defend his thesis, Weber’s decides to evaluate several spheres of this life: religious, politic, economic, and even family relations. When the reader observes the situation that is more or less familiar to him/her, it turns out to be more interesting and educative to comprehend the material and take into consideration the hints given.

Politics is a thing that may take passion and perspective simultaneously. This is why human emotions and ethical norms should be analyzed to find the answer why and how politics is connected to ethics. And Weber presents a wonderful analysis, grounding on real life examples, personal experience, and already known facts.

Works Cited

Weber, Max. Politics as a Vacation. 2009. Web.

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Max Weber: Explaining the Tragedy of 1978 Essay

September 21, 2021 by Essay Writer


Max Weber focused on major principles that governed human societies. He analysed theories concerning various phenomena which took place in human societies. Thus, he reconsidered Marx’s theory. However, his ideas concerning religion and the role of religion in humans’ life are quite exceptional. Weber’s theories can help to understand and, maybe, explain stimuli of people who lived in the notorious Jonestown. Weber’s ideas concerning domination and the Baptist Sects provide insights into the processes that led to the tragedy of 1978.


According to Max Weber people tend to organize (or be organized) into groups. It is necessary to point out that these groups do not interact on equal terms. This is where domination comes into place. Weber (1978) defined domination as “the probability that certain specific commands (or all commands) will be obeyed by a given group of persons” (p. 212). There are many factors that affect people and make them obey.

Weber (1978) pointed out three types of authority that made people obey: traditional authority, rational-legal authority and charismatic authority. This classification can be used to explain the phenomenon of Jonestown. Jim Jones became a charismatic leader and created a group of believers (Jonestown, 2006). Those people followed him as they believed in his “revelation, his heroism” and his personal qualities (Weber, 1978, p. 216).

However, it can be difficult to understand what made people believe in that (even charismatic) personality. Weber (1978) provided an answer to this question as well. The renowned sociologist suggested several reasons which could make people obey. One of these reasons is particularly important when considering the case of Jonestown. Weber (1978) stated that people could submit from their helplessness as there was no alternative for them.

This was precisely the case of people who left their homes to settle down in Jonestown (or just believe in Jim Jones). People found themselves in the hostile society where multinationals and corporations ruled the world, where racism and other forms of discrimination were still there (Jonestown, 2006). People longed for a new world where equality and peace ruled. Jim Jones promised them to build such a society.

Notably, Jim Jones did not simply create an ordinary organization; he created a religious organization based on major principles of Christianity. Admittedly, this was one of the main qualities of the organization that attracted so many people. Remarkably, some called the People Temple a cult, whereas some considered it to be a powerful formation that could change the world. Nowadays people see this religious organization as an example of the other side of religious beliefs.

Religious Constituent

Major Peculiarity of Some Religious Organizations

The fact that the Peoples Temple was a religious organization brings to the fore one more theory developed by Max Weber. Thus, he pointed out that

[a] strict avoidance of the world… were the results for the first Baptist communities, and this principle of avoidance of the world never quite disappeared so long as the old spirit remained alive. (Weber, 1930, n.p.)

In other words, Weber argued that numerous religious organizations (he used the word communities) were based on the principle of escape from the society they pertained to. The Peoples Temple was one of such organizations as people who joined it and followed Jim Jones did not feel safe in the contemporary society. They wanted to escape from various kinds of discrimination and they wanted to build a new better society (Jonestown, 2006).

Jim Jones gave people what they wanted. He portrayed a society where justice, equality and good ruled. He went further and called people to come with him to build a new place. Jones suggested a way to escape and many people followed. Thus, Weber’s theory turned out to be correct in one more case.

Ultimate Attempt to Escape

This theory is also manifested in the extreme way Jones’ followers chose. Weber (1930) noted that Baptist organizations largely relied upon the principle of salvation. Apart from mere avoidance of worldly life, many members of such organizations sought for salvation. Weber (1930) also stressed that those organizations were authoritarian.

In other words, leaders had a great power over members of their communities. Therefore, people were ready to follow their leader to the end. This was the case with Jonestown. More than 900 people obeyed and committed suicide as their leader claimed that they could not put up with the vicious world and had to leave it (Jonestown, 2006).

Legitimacy of Jones’ Organization

It goes without saying that such ideas sound like a kind of ideology. Some may say that Jones was trying to show the entire world that there was something wrong with it. However, if to take into account Weber’s theory it becomes clear that Jones pursued his own goals.

Weber (1978) claimed that the entire system is based on the idea of its legitimacy. When members of an organization do not obey, organization ceases to exist. Thus, organization can exist until there is authority and dominance. Basically, Jones’ organization was one of such examples.

The organization was a powerful entity at the beginning. People believed in their leader. Many people joined the organization as they saw a real way out. They obtained the necessary alternative to the hostile society. Nonetheless, soon people got disappointed in the organization and its leader. They started leaving the organization (Jonestown, 2006). This was the point when Jones understood that he was not the great authority anymore.

He understood that he would soon lose everything. People did not believe in the organization’s legitimacy. Jones found the way to prove he was an authority. It goes without saying that Jones’ way to regain dominance became a horrible tragedy. However, it is also necessary to note that the instance of Jonestown tragedy does prove Weber’s theory concerning dominance and authority. Jonestown is the example that an organization cannot exist without dominance.


On balance, it is possible to note that Weber’s theories on human society and religion are applicable in many cases. Thus, these theories can explain such events as Jonestown tragedy. Weber claimed that people were likely to form groups and societies which were governed by certain principles. According to Weber, one of the major principles of humans’ societies is dominance.

Thus, Jim Jones being a charismatic leader formed a religious organization which followed the basic principle of such kind of entities. The organization was based on principles of dominance, i.e. authority and individual desire to escape the hostile (worldly) society. It is important to note that the Peoples Temple should be regarded as an extreme as the leader of the organization used his authority to make people give their lives for some illusive objective.


Jonestown: The life and death of Peoples Temple. (2006). Web.

Weber, Max. (1930). The Protestant ethic and the spirit of Capitalism. Web.

Weber, Max. (1978). Economy and society: An outline of interpretive sociology. Berkeley: University of California Press.

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Max Weber’ and Clifford Geertz’ Views on Religion Essay

September 21, 2021 by Essay Writer


Max Weber and Geertz offered varying ideas regarding cultural theory. They both viewed culture as people’s ways of doing things in society. Culture is usually developed over years whereby it is adopted and passed from one generation to the other through language. Regarding religion, which is one of the aspects of culture, Geertz and Weber offered a number of views. Some viewpoints are similar while others are different.

However, the two scholars believe that religion happens within a group implying that it is a group affair. In this regard, various groups have different religious principles and beliefs. Morality is the main principle that all religious groups and teachings espouse. Even though the two scholars agreed that religion happens at an individual level, they offered varying approaches to the understanding of group behavior. Weber noted that each religion is rational and consistent as far as its rules are concerned.

Unlike his predecessors such as Durkheim, Weber claimed in his works, ‘The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism’ that religion could easily bring about change in society. His analysis was based on the spread of capitalism in Europe. He claimed that the Protestant abstemious self-confidence was attributed to the quick spread of capitalist ideals.

However, unlike Geertz, Weber did not intend to develop a cultural theory that would explain the dynamics of religion. His main aim was to discuss the interactions and interrelations between society and religion. On the other hand, Geertz perceived religion as a cultural system that is full of symbols, which have both public and social meaning.

People always construct their own beliefs meaning that each person has his or her own views concerning religion. Some groups have shared views regarding religion. Weber’s views were different from the ideas of Geertz because to him, religion had a different role to play in society. This article looks at some of the similarities and differences between the views of Weber and Geertz as regards to religion. The paper uses one aspect of culture to discuss their views.


Geertz undertook various studies in one of the villages in Javanese, which was one of the most complex religious societies. He sought to understand the reason that inspired people to worship the supernatural being in their daily lives. Other scholars had suggested a number of views regarding the topic, but he diverged from such views by noting that the issue of religion is not a group affair, but instead it is a social affair.

This implies that it happens within a particular society. Evans-Pritchard was one of the scholars who suggested that religion is simply a group attitude because it is developed to check the behavior of group members. Geertz rejected this subjective and vague view by adopting the ideas of Weber regarding the role of religion among the Protestants in Europe. Weber was of the view that religion is a phenomenon that starts at an individual level meaning that each person has his own belief.

These beliefs develop with time into complex ideas that are in turn adopted by a group of individuals in society. Once the belief is within the public domain, it turns out to be a social system that influences people’s behavior and interactions in the wider society. Since the behavior is learned and would be internalized for years, it becomes a cultural belief or a cultural system, given the fact that it can be transmitted from one individual to the other.

Weber had earlier noted that people are always in search of truth since a man is an animal that is suspended in webs of significance. In this regard, a man does not have to look for solutions on the Earth that would resolve the many issues facing him but, instead, he has to interpret society using some mystical principles. Offering simple explanations to religious beliefs is not enough implying that people should look for the real meaning of religious events.

To explain some of these religious events, clear interpretations should be given. Geertz was of the similar view because he noted that thick descriptions should be applied in interpreting religious events if adequate answers were to be provided. According to Geertz, the use of symbols in interpreting religious events is the only solution to the many problems affecting people as far as religious issues are concerned.

He noted that some symbols are always in use in religion. Therefore, the understanding of the use of these symbols is very important. Weber noted that the Protestants were able to engage in trade and other economic matters because their religion taught them that an individual’s destiny is always predetermined. Weber reached this decision after observing the behavior of Protestants for years.

He also used some of the symbols, which was the basis of Geertz’s analysis. Geertz suggested that an anthropologist should use empirical methods to interpret the behavior of a group or an individual as regards to religion. Weber had also suggested a similar view by noting that a sociologist should use technical methods such as guessing, assessing, and drawing conclusions as far as the understanding of religion is concerned.

Geertz and Weber believed in the semiotic interpretation of culture meaning that their major aim was to understand some of the factors that drive people to join certain cultures. In this regard, they both believed that the understanding of culture starts with the interpretation of certain elements and categorization of certain interactions. The whole system should be categorized into sub-subsystems if any substantial meaning is to be offered.

The system is characterized based on the major beliefs and principles meaning that there are various subsystems of culture in society. Each category of the subsystem has some of the principles that members respect so much. Geertz termed this aspect as a form of collective property. Geertz’s and Weber’s argument is that religion influences the actions of various group members because it is larger as compared to the actions of any individual in a group.


Even though the two scholars discussed extensively the issues surrounding religion, their aims were extremely different. While Geertz aimed at developing a cultural theory, Weber was simply trying to link religion to the behavior of individuals in society. For instance, Geertz noted that cultural theory is not its own master meaning that it relies on certain concepts just the way other theories do.

Therefore, the suggestion on thick description is meant to give anthropologists one of the ways in which cultural issues could be construed in society. For Weber, he was simply describing the influence that culture has on the economic behavior of certain groups in society. He utilized the Protestants to show that people are encouraged to do some things because of the influence of their culture. In one of the articles titled Deep Play, Geertz showed how thick description could be employed to comprehend the actions of certain groups.

While Weber viewed religion as an aspect of culture that has a great impact on the life of an individual in society, Geertz was of a different view because he believed that religion is a cultural system. This implies that no society can survive without religion. In his view, all symbols in any society signify the presence of religion. This system is constructed over time, which results in a powerful and pervasive motivation for individuals.

With time, people in any given society come to appreciate their culture and tend to believe that other cultures are inferior to theirs. The culture ensures that social order prevails in society because it regulates behavior. Weber was of the different view because he did not give a cultural function of religion but, instead, he only related it to the behavior of individuals in society. His major aim was to give the relationship between religion and society.

According to Geertz, religion is inseparable from culture because they are both systems of communication in any given society. However, Weber believed that the two concepts exist independently meaning that they are autonomous, but they influence each other. Geertz concluded his analysis by noting that a strong relationship between an individual’s worldview and morality exists.

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Research Conducted by Weber and Tarba Report

September 21, 2021 by Essay Writer


The research paper selected and why it was selected

The research paper selected for review is Mergers and acquisitions process: the use of corporate culture analyses by Yaakov Weber and Shlomo Tarba. The paper was selected as it discusses cultural integration challenges encountered by organisations seeking to come together to form mergers or acquisitions.

Based on the rationale that the research by Weber and Tarba (2012) presents, the paper is selected for review. The research paper builds on the current research findings on the importance of creation of organisational cultural harmony in mergers and acquisitions.

Structure of report

The paper begins by discussion of the purpose, rationale, and related literature followed by the methodology adopted by the authors. The research findings are then presented before giving the conclusive remarks.

Summary of purpose, rationale, and related literature


Mergers and acquisitions have a problem of organisational cultural integration. For instance, when the merger between Westpac Corporation and St. George Bank was formed, issues of fear of retrenchments, cultural differences, and survival syndromes emerged.

Considering this example, it is important to develop both theoretical and practical approaches for resolution of these challenges in organisational management literature. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the extent to which Weber and Tarba (2012) fully discuss the challenges of acquisitions and mergers in terms of organisational culture integration and how the proposed solutions measure up to the indentified challenges.


When a merger or acquisition occurs between two organisations, tensions emerge between the different entities due to differing organisational cultures. Employees are the most affected elements of an organisation in the event of a merger. This assertion holds for employees are the active components of an organisation that are directly subject to established organisational cultures.

Human resources play the function of helping in the management of the challenges occurring from differing organisational cultures of the organisations coming together to form a merger.

However, amidst this effort, cultural integration challenges are inevitable. For this reason, it is important to determine both the challenges and solutions to integration of organisational cultures affecting organisations coming together to form a merger or acquisition. This observation underlines the relevance and rationale for reviewing the selected research paper.

Clarity of the research question

In both qualitative and quantitative research, research questions form the basis for communicating the intentions of conducting a specific research. Scientific research contains research question(s) preceding conceptual frameworks since the review of existing research should correspond to the intention of conducting a given research. The clarity of a research question is gauged based on two main important aspects.

The ability to specify the type of research being undertaken constitutes the first aspects, while the second aspect encompasses the capacity to identify particular research objectives. The objective of the Weber and Tarba’s (2012, p.288) research is specified in the purpose statement as ‘advancing cross-cultural management during mergers and acquisitions’. However, the authors only state the purpose of research and then proceed to examine their conceptual framework without providing clear research questions.

Conceptual foundation

A review of literature on the findings on cross-cultural differences in post-mergers or acquisitions over the last twenty years from the time of the research reveals mixed findings.

Relying on the theoretical and empirical research findings on impacts of cross-cultural differences in mergers and acquisitions, Weber and Tarba (2012, p. 288) argue that the findings reflect ‘contradictory and perplexing findings’. From one perspective, the research confirms that impacts of cultural differences between organisations forming mergers or acquisitions produce negative implications in terms of their performance.

However, by quoting the work of different scholars, Weber and Tarba (2012) argue that some literature on effects of cross-cultural differences in mergers and acquisitions may also have positive impacts apart from negative effects to the success of mergers and acquisitions. These findings pose the question on whether to propagate and encourage cross-cultural differences in organisations in the post-merger state.

Weber and Tarba (2012) argue that most executives and managers involved in planning and subsequent execution of mergers only appreciate the roles of cross-cultural differences in affecting the success of a merger or acquisition in the post-merger or acquisition stage.

This assertion is based on in depth search and review of literature on how cross-cultural differences are handled in all stages of formation of mergers and acquisitions. For instance, the authors argue that the involved parties ignore or mishandle cultural differences during the decision-making process.

The authors attribute the above challenges to excessive focusing of scholarly literature on cultural differences in the post-merger state while ignoring its impacts on planning and negotiation phases. They also argue that concepts of culture are not clear to executives; hence, the assessment and implementation phases become problematic.

Therefore, in the conceptual framework, the authors examine literature that builds on the importance and how culture measurement and assessments are accomplished after defining organisational culture in the context of mergers and acquisitions and discussing the various perspectives of culture in an organisation.

Research methodology and design

Description and evaluation of methodology

Research site/context

This research did not deploy primary data collection methods. Consequently, there is no specific research site or context. However, the case studies deployed coupled with empirical and theoretical literature is confined to studies of successful and failed mergers and acquisitions.

Methods of data collection

The maim method of data collection used was conducting scrutiny of secondary data drawn from empirical and theoretical research on the processes of mergers and acquisitions formation. The main concern was particularly on studies incorporating perspectives of cross-cultural culture and its impacts on the success and failure of mergers.

Case studies were incorporated to avail data on practical scenarios on the implication of cultural differences on success of mergers and acquisitions. The evaluation of the appropriateness of the chosen research methodology depends on various considerations for quality qualitative research.

The methodology for qualitative research deployed in a research should have some specific characteristics. According to Yardley (2000, p.216), such characteristics include ‘credibility, reliability, use of rigorous methods and verification, validity, clarity, and coherence in reporting’ among others. According to Cohen and Crabtree (2008, p.333), scholars largely contend that ‘qualitative research should be ethical, be important, and be clearly and coherently articulated and use appropriate and rigorous methods’.

In the light of the identified qualities of good research methodology, validity is a striking trait vital for consideration in studies using case studies as the main research methodology. Validity can both be internal and external. Yardley (2000, p. 220) defines validity as the ‘best approximation to the truth or falsity of proportions’. External validity implies the degree of truth of various claims raised in the research and the existing variables.

On the other hand, Cohen and Crabtree (2008, p.333) posit that external validity implies the ‘extent to which one can generalise findings’. The method utilised in a qualitative research should aid the researchers to attain optimal levels of validity for their research for their work to add significant knowledge to the body of knowledge they seek to amplify. Case studies are important in this extent since they provide means for challenging various theoretical constructs and assumptions.

Methods of data analysis

Analysis involves examination of secondary data derived from literature on the formation of mergers and acquisitions to extract information on the extents of consideration of aspects of cross-cultural differences at various phases of mergers or acquisitions formation. Through this examination, gaps in the incorporation of cultural differences in processes of merger and acquisitions formation are identified.

Sample size

The research paper by Weber and Tarba does not indentify its sample size. It does not also indentify the number of empirical theoretical studies or even case studies reviewed. The selection criteria of the different researches used in their review are also not indentified.

Ethical issues

Research requires consideration of ethical issues in its design. In research, design, ethics implies compliance to acceptable research standards. Ethics in research is taken care of by conducting a research in a respectful, honest, and humane manner, which is engulfed within the values of collaboration, service, and empathy.

In the context of research by Yaakov Weber and Shlomo Tarba, validity, as an essential ethical issue, is well addressed. Case studies aid in the establishment of a practical framework for operation of suggested theoretical principles, which enhances the validity of the research. Ethics of research are observed by enhancing originality and provision of valuable research findings.

Adoption of research design in the future

Weber and Tarba’s research observes validity as an essential outcome of qualitative research deploying case studies and other forms of secondary data. The research offers possible insights and solutions to the challenges of corporate culture coupled with its implications in the pre-merger or acquisitions, the negotiation stage and the post-merger or acquisition stage.

The solutions offered are consistent with the identified gaps (lack of consideration of corporate culture in the planning and negotiation phases in formation of a merger or an acquisition). This implies that the research methodology is adoptable in other similar research study in the future.

Main findings and implications

Outline of the main findings

One of the chief findings of the research paper by Weber and Tarba (2012) is that the management teams and executives in charge of planning for mergers and acquisitions do not consider perspectives of cross-culture in the planning and negotiation phases of mergers or acquisitions’ formation. In addition, they do not have adequate knowledge on different organisational cultures; hence, evaluation and assessment of the implications on mergers and acquisitions become problematic.

The research notes that measurement of various organisational cultural differences is important at three stages. The authors report that at the planning phase, evaluation, and assessment of cross-cultural differences are the three important phases in a bid to increase the profitability of organisations.

Profitability increases since the identification of challenges anticipated in a merger or acquisition is possible on measurement of cross-cultural differences in organisations coming together to form a merger or acquisition. On identifications of cultural differences and upon their measurement, the authors argue that cash flow expectation can be determined and the impacts of the differences on the EPS and stock prices evaluated.

The research also notes that incorporation of perspectives of cross-cultural differences at the phase of mergers and acquisitions formation is important at the negotiations phase. Assessment and measurement of cross-cultural differences at this phase is crucial for various reasons as it aids in preparing for negotiations.

These preparations include provision of a mechanism of enabling organisations to understand communication challenges due to differing organisational culture, identification and drawing of red lines and strategies to handle cultural differences expected, and establishing a mechanism of determining the costs for the formation of mergers and acquisitions.

At the stage of negotiations, assessment and measuring of cross-cultural differences is of great importance in the effort to set up payment structures in relation to hardships for enhancing the integration process. Identification of challenges expected in mergers and acquisitions helps in the attainment of the negotiations’ objectives.

At the stage of contract signing, assessment and measurement of cross-cultural differences aids in the acceptance of appropriate prices while considering risks of cultural differences coupled with challenges of a merger and acquisition implementation. It also helps in determining the required levels of cooperation coupled with determining the requisite plan for implementation.

The third finding is on the importance of assessment and measurement of cross-cultural differences the in the integration process for organisations forming mergers or acquisitions. Through the measurement and assessment of cross-cultural differences, organisations are in a position to establish the correct approach of integration, determine the appropriate units for integration within organisations in the context of desired common culture.

Findings implications

The findings have the implication of calling for deployment of cross-cultural differences measurement in the planning, negotiation, and post-merger or acquisition phases, screening, and then classification of the potential candidates to engage in a merger or acquisition. This way, it becomes possible to avoid failures of mergers and acquisitions due to cross-cultural differences.

The findings also imply that mergers abort due to the failure to include the perspective of cross-cultural difference in the planning and negotiation phases of merger and acquisition formation. Hence, by understanding the various cultural differences amongst potential candidates for forming an acquisition or merger with, communication strategies for successful recruitment coupled with training can be developed in line with the prevailing organisational cultural differences.


The researchers provided important insights on how to evade failure of mergers and acquisitions due to the cross-cultural difference in the involved organisations. The study was based on case studies of experienced failures on mergers and acquisitions deals to consider the aspect of cross-cultural differences in all phases of forming acquisitions and mergers.

However, the researchers did not infer from their findings to explain how such information could be applied through the application-specific findings on avoiding failure of mergers or acquisitions applicable to each case.


Highlighting key points

In the research conducted by Weber and Tarba using the evaluation of both theoretical and empirical studies on effects of cross-cultural differences in formation of mergers and acquisitions, the authors conclude that the perspectives should be considered in the planning, negotiation, and post-merger or acquisition phases. The findings of their research indicate that the incorporation of these perspectives may aid in reduction of failure rates of mergers and acquisitions.

Suitability of the research design

Although case studies are deployed to evaluate the role of cross-cultural differences in the success of mergers and acquisitions, this research design has the limitation of failing to infer back to the case studies to establish appropriate course of action that could have avoided failure of specific mergers and acquisitions discussed in the case studies. However, the findings are important for consideration in the future mergers involving organisations with differing cross-cultures.

Reference List

Cohen, D. & Crabtree, B. 2008, ‘Evaluative Criteria for Qualitative Research in Health Care: Controversies and Recommendations’, Criteria for Qualitative Research, vol. 6 no.4, pp. 331-339.

Weber, Y. & Tarba, S. 2012, ‘Mergers and Acquisitions Process: The Use of Corporate Culture Analyses’, Cross Cultural Management, vol.19 no.3, pp. 288-303.

Yardley, L. 2000, ‘Dilemmas in qualitative health research’, Psychological Health, vol.15 vol.3, pp. 215-228.

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Weber’s Conception of the Capitalist Entrepreneur and the Modern Bureaucrat Essay

September 21, 2021 by Essay Writer


Capitalist entrepreneurs base their decision in possible returns after proper calculations. They believe in the existence free entry and exit to market and the adequate flow of the factors of production. Thus, there is a wide market where profits are directly proportion to innovations and efficiency in the production.

While modern bureaucracy is the administration means where appropriate knowledge vital and vested rights of an individual is purely on efficient in performances. Weber affirm that credential of an individual should be based on qualification which is evident in the modern society where formal education is emphasized.


According to Weber “it is not ideas, but material and ideal interests that directly govern men’s conduct. The ‘world images’ have been created by ‘ideas’ along which actions have been pushed by dynamic of interest” (Weber, Gerthand Turner 280). The ideas act as a base for one to carve appropriate actions avenue to inspire revolution and development leading to capitalist entrepreneurs. Thus, it is not capitalism that threaten individual creativity but the increasing bureaucracies dominance due to rationalization process.

The existence of capitalist entrepreneurs will lay a good foundation for competition that will lead to increase in innovative ideas hence the increase in opportunities. The growth is brought about by social transformation which is dramatically fueled by individuals calling accompanied by a need to change the social life. It is the differences in economy and social lives that have to the developments in the bureaucracy in order to level it.

Modern bureaucracy to some extent being more perfectly leads to dehumanization especially when it succeeds completely in criminating emotional elements, hatred and love for business in personal gain that escapes proper calculations.

This is a consideration as it is partially a virtue of capitalism as material gains is necessary condition. Advancing in bureaucracy calls for more specialization and division of labor in order to have suitable foundation of administration hence, the need for trained experts who would displaces the traditional way of leadership (Edles and Appelrouth 217).

The legal system in the bureaucrats has led to the development of capitalist entrepreneurs in that each person is treated as having right which regulated in the commercial dealings. There is universal citizenship where each person has equal rights despite the religion, tribe and class differences.

There is the need for professionalism and expertise these matters. The capitalist are the wealth owner even if they do not directly involve in the production. Similarly one can be a solder without being the owner of the gun but they are given the mandate to use it where necessary. The legal system thus ensures that individual rights are not violated when one is doing his or her duty ((Weber, Gerth and Turner 168).

Consequently, for bureaucracy to advance there is need for proper planning and sufficient resources all organized in a professional conduct. This is guided by the officialdom minimization of authority so as expand the sphere of interest in serving the larger public.

The qualifications of experts are highly regarded in order to be efficient in the provision of required services while shortening their term to monitor and evaluate their performances. This is a similar case in capitalist entrepreneurs who are minority in the country and efficiently provide necessities due to their line of specialization and their interests. Here the rule of elite in both cases is witnessed (Weber, Gerth and Turner 169).

The Modern bureaucracy is indestructible as the administration is headed to perfection. This is because a rationally organized instrument under equal conditions with social action is more superior if directed to actions by collective behavior even if it is being opposed by social actions.

The possibility of this is enhanced by the full control of the modern means of communications and increased internal structures rationalization. This is a similar occasion where it is hard to eliminate individual enterprises that with time develops strategies to keep off potential competitors and since they are providers of necessities then they becomes indestructible. They have put down stronger foundation while being the key innovators in the modern society.

The distinction is importance in understanding the modern society because almost all societies have changed in their view in capitalism. It is this that has led to nations adapting privatization in their resources. With the current global warming in all parts of the world, it is entrepreneurs who are in the fore front advocating for appropriate ways of development without adversely affecting the resources and human existence.

Modernization leads to more literate population who becomes more innovative and eager to accumulate wealth. There is a strong correlation between the capitalist and early preface of accumulative literacy in the growth and development of various economies in the world.

It is the capitalist entrepreneurs who have provided great jobs opportunities due to their innovations and need to secure their ideas and interests. Specialization in different areas and being ground-breaking in it has led to some entrepreneurs becoming key figures in the society as they are mandated with the role of decision making.

It is this that sees them becoming politicians and developing appropriate bureaucracies to safe guard their businesses and to be minority in the field. This is what has stirred the widely contested elections and the use of advanced technology in administration. The administration is left to minority who are more qualified and experts to rule the majority who becomes satisfied.

In the modern society there is a wide economical gap between the rich and the poor especially in developing countries. There is a greater number of idleness and poorhouses where finally develops into slums. The gap to some cases can be attributed to capitalist entrepreneurs who only want to meet the goal of accumulative wealth and influential decision making.

In these countries, the effect of inflation is highly felt by all citizens since there is more hoarding of necessities in anticipation of high prices to increase government revenue from taxation which is directly proportion to profits. The modern bureaucracy has seen devolution of resources nationally leading to a reduction of poverty. They have resolved to proper planning and administration of available resource thereby encouraging private investment to various parts for efficiency.

The Modern bureaucracy in most of the developing countries has led to office holders doing wrong in favor of a politician. This has led sacrificing offices in stead of genuinely accepting responsibility for their morally dubious deed. This has led to misuse of available resources and few minorities benefiting especially in cases where stability and reliability of bureaucracy is more superior.

This is what has led to the capitalist entrepreneur in the modern societies monitor and evaluate the performance of an individual in every stage. Hence the workers are aware of their preoccupations which in most cases are measured mathematically where modern lines runs the enterprise. (Edles and Appelrouth 180)

More so, the increase in the population of people creates the need for modern bureaucracy where good administration is needed. The complexity of the space and the growth in population has resulted to the increase in monetary economy. In order to sufficiently satisfy the citizens, the communications and transportation sector has to be efficient.

The new systems are costly to install in all the areas but they treats all people equally. In a capitalist enterprise one efficiently provides the goods and services using the available resources to meet as many consumers as possible.


In conclusion, the modern bureaucracy can be considered to be effective in the rationalization in the society. This is due to the fact that both private and public sectors in various economies have expanded in their efficiency and usage of modern technologies.

There are various characteristics of modern bureaucrats that are ideal in the society in order to make a distinctive mark. This includes efficiency, well stipulated code of conduct, authority hierarchy, division of labor based on individual specialization, impersonality and promotion on achievements through monitoring.

Coordinating large population in the modern society bureaucracy is sufficiently enhanced by prevailing structural features including advanced technology. The capitalist economy has assisted in making this possible by coordinating planning in the large scale sectors. The inventions always come with the monetary gain hence contributing to growth and development since there is a cycle in investing in other areas.

Works Cited

Edles, Laura and Appelrouth, Scott. Sociological theory in the classical era: Text and readings. New York: Sage, 1965.Print.

Weber, Max, Gerth, Hans H. and Turner, Bryan. From Max Weber: Essays in sociology. New York: Routlegde, 1946.Print.

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Karl Marx, Max Weber and Talcott Parsons Contributions in Sociology Compare and Contrast Essay

September 21, 2021 by Essay Writer


The nineteenth century witnessed the existence of some of the most revolutionary minds in sociology. During this era, Karl Marx and Max Weber stand out as the most instrumental conflict sociological theorists. These two sociologists attempt to elucidate social change and its impact on society.

Another great sociological theorist, who took a structural functionalist approach, is Talcott Parsons. Though differing in many aspects, their understanding of society has some similarities. This paper takes a look at the contributions of these three sociologists to society and sociological discourse.

Conflict Perspective: Comparing Max Weber and Karl Marx

Weber’s work seems to be in response to Marx’s views of society. He maintains that Marx’s approach is narrow and limiting, and depends too much on economic variables in explaining societal change. Responding to this apparent lack of depth, Weber chooses to model his sociological explanation of change around macro-sociological occurrences[1]. He feels that there are more than just economic perspectives to understanding human societies and change.

Marx’s assessment of change is not founded on the conflict of opinions. Instead, he focuses on class conflict that emanates from unequal distribution of the means of production. In his view, history is made up of different periods marking different systems in modes of production such as primal communism, slavery, feudalism, and capitalism. In his postulation, the ideal state of affairs exists in a socialist classless community.

Weber disputes Marx’s economically centered approach citing oversimplification. He asserts that, besides economic explanations, there are other causes of progression and change. In addition, Weber establishes a connection between the capitalist system and protestant principles concerning labor.

As an example, he uses the beliefs of Calvinism where, to get into heaven, one has to do the utmost good for the highest number of people. In such a community, work is not just for personal development, but for religious fulfillment. Unlike Weber, Marx is more interested in the social structures than the implication of these structures in society. In his view, class structure exists in all societies and is the source of power.

A major point of divergence is their concept of class. In Marx’s ideology, the constant conflict between classes is caused by the disparities in the class system. In contrast, the class system can be abolished in the same way that feudalism is abolished. Though they present different viewpoints concerning the causes of change in society, they both agree on the nature of the society.

Talcott Parsons’ Contributions to Sociological Discourse

Talcott Parsons is another great sociologist whose contributions to sociology cannot go unnoticed. His main area of focus is social order where he believes that social order and continuity are products of values in that society, and not structures. In his conception, established and understanding families are fundamental for effective socialization.

He sees the division of labor as a product of sexual discrimination where man is allocated the most important role of the breadwinner[2]. Women play the role of managing the household and caring for children. He supports an absolute division of labor to ensure societal progress. This view is a platform for conflict between the followers of Parsons and most feminist theorists.

Parsons also makes major contributions to the field of medicine. He postulates that proper functioning of the society demands mental and physical health of the members[3]. Diseases undermine progress in society since they hinder optimal performance of roles.

Another landmark contribution of Parsons is his support for the rights of the elderly. He believes that, for progress in a society, the society must delegate roles to its elder members in accordance to their advanced age[4]. He asserts that the elderly have accumulated wisdom over the ages and can make useful contributions to society.


Karl Marx, Max Weber and Talcott Parsons are undoubtedly some of the greatest theoretical minds sociology has ever had. Though their contributions to sociology are numerous, their works on social change and order mark major turning points in the history of sociology.


Reskin, Barbara F., and Denise D. Bielby. “A Sociological Perspective on Gender and Career Outcomes.”Journal of Economic Perspectives, 19. no. 1. (2005): 71-86.

Sciortino Giuseppe, “A Comment on Talcott Parsons at Brown University” American Journal of Economics and Sociology, 65. no. 1. (2006): 65–69

Wallace, A. Ruth, and Alison Wolf. Contemporary Sociological Theory: Expanding the Classical Tradition. USA: Prentice Hall PTR, 2009.


  1. Ruth A. Wallace and Alison Wolf, Contemporary Sociological Theory: Expanding the Classical Tradition (USA: Prentice Hall PTR, 2009), 22.
  2. Barbara F. Reskin and Denise D. Bielby, “A Sociological Perspective on Gender and Career Outcomes.” Journal of Economic Perspectives, 19. no. 1 (2005): 73.
  3. Giuseppe Sciortino, “A Comment on Talcott Parsons at Brown University,” American Journal of Economics and Sociology, 65. no. 1. (2006): 66.
  4. Wallace, Contemporary sociological theory, 43.
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Marx and Weber and How their Views Differ on Religion Research Paper

September 21, 2021 by Essay Writer


Karl Marx and Max Weber were among the most influential scholars who made remarkable contribution to sociological theory in the nineteenth century. Marx and Weber are known for their analysis of capitalism and its relationship with religion. According to Marx, capitalism is an economic system in which the means of production are owned and controlled by private entities (Dillon 52).

The capitalists mainly produce for the exchange market. Capitalism is sustained by the relationship between workers, means of production, and owners of capital. This paper will shed light on the similarities and differences between the perspectives of Marx and Weber concerning religion and the rise of capitalism.



Marx attributes the emergence of the capitalist system to the historical advancement of the material aspect of the society. Marx considered economic production as the main element of the structure of the society.

Thus, the social structure can only be understood by analyzing the way the society organizes its production. In this regard, Marx argued that the society consists of the economic base and the superstructure. In the capitalist society, “economic base is characterized with the organization of production in large companies with the aim of securing profits” (Appelrouth 97).

This leads to exploitation of workers and an increase in the earnings of the capitalists. The superstructure refers to the social institutions such as religion, education, and the political system. The economic base determines the operation of various social institutions. Consequently, the superstructure perpetuates the supremacy of the capitalists.

According to Marx, each society evolves sequentially in five phases that have dissimilar systems of production. These include “primitive communism, ancient, feudal, capitalism, and communism” (Hallan 69). The ancient, feudal, and capitalist societies are class-based. The ruling and the dependent are the most significant social classes in these societies. The subordinates (dependent) who are the majority created wealth for the ruling class through exploitation. Thus, Marx concluded that the society is always characterized with class conflicts.

Capitalism rose as the new mode of production after the emergence of government control and increased use of machinery in production led to the fall of the feudal system. Marx asserts that labor-power was commoditized under capitalism (Appelrouth 112). The bourgeoisie owned the capital that was used to produce various goods and services.

The proletariat, on the other hand, sold their labor and earned wages. Marx believed that capitalism is not sustainable because it is characterized with “an increasing reserve army of the unemployed, declining rate of profit, concentration of industry into fewer firms, and increasing misery within the proletariat” (Dillon 114).

Marx considered these characteristics as the seeds of the downfall of capitalism (Yuill 126-143). Specifically, the problems associated with capitalism would lead to a social revolution by the proletariats and the capitalist system would be replaced with communism.


Marx did not analyze the logic of religion. He perceived religious beliefs as a reflection of the problems that the society faced. Marx believed that religion was man’s creation. He asserts that “religion is the self-consciousness and self-esteem of man who has either not yet found himself or has already lost himself again” (Hallan 87). This implies that Marx considered religion as false consciousness of man.

According to Marx, religion is the product of historical injustices and systems of exploitation rather than the creation of the capitalists. Marx considered religion as part of the superstructure (Dillon 151). Thus, it helped the proletariats to cope with the exploitations and miseries of the capitalist system. Marx also considered religion as a dominant ideology that perpetuated the ruling class. Specifically, the ideas of the ruling class (capitalists) were transmitted and legitimated by the church through religion.



Weber believed that the Protestant ethic was one of the most important causes of the rise of capitalism. This belief was based on Weber’s observation that most business leaders in the west were Protestants. The Protestants, particularly, Calvinists believed that only a small percentage of the population would receive salvation (Appelrouth 117).

Although the people who would be saved were predetermined, individuals considered economic success as a sign of salvation. In this regard, Calvinists focused on diligence, frugality, and embracing work as their vocation to achieve economic success. Consequently, capitalism emerged as people created wealth, which was considered as “an end in itself rather than a means to satisfy needs” (Appelrouth 118).

According to Weber, the development of capitalism in the modern society is influenced by several factors. To begin with, industrial revolution led to increased production using machinery. Secularization of the society and changes in systems of governance led to increased rationalization, which in turn facilitated the emergence of new economic systems (Goldstein 115-151). These include the market economy, international trade, and an expanded labor market.

According to Weber, the conditions outlined in the forgoing paragraph have always existed in the society. This suggests that capitalism is likely to have existed albeit in a primitive manner in the pre-modern society. The modern world is considered as a capitalist society since capitalism is its main mode of production (Hallan 123). Weber also believed that capitalism could have emerged directly or indirectly due to other factors that he did not mention.


Weber perceived religion as a system of social relationships that is characterized with a belief in supernatural powers that are revealed through different charismatic manifestations. Individuals articulate the supernatural powers through symbolic expressions under the leadership the clergy. According to Weber, religion enables individuals to achieve their personal interests (Goldstein 115-151).

In the ancient society, magicians helped the community to fulfill their material needs such as shelter and food. As the society developed, priests replaced magicians by introducing standardized systems of control, placation, and supplication of supernatural beings. This led to emergence of bureaucracies that facilitate social stability, allocation of various resources, and preservation of culture. According to Weber, prophets use charismatic ideas to lead the change process in the society.

Similarities in the Views of Marx and Weber

The perspectives of Marx and Weber concerning the emergence of modern capitalism are similar in the following ways. To begin with, Marx and Weber agree that modern capitalism has never existed before in the history of the world.

Although Weber suggested that capitalism is likely to have existed before, he believed that the modern society has the most dominant and advanced form of capitalism (Appelrouth 119). Weber and Marx agree that technological advancements during the industrial revolution facilitated the rise of modern capitalism.

In particular, they argue that the use of machinery helped producers to increase production in the capitalists system. However, it also led to an increase in unemployment and misery among workers. The analysis by Marx and Weber indicate that accumulation of wealth or profits was the main goal of the capitalists. In addition, Marx and Weber believe that changes in the systems of governance helped to control the economy, thereby facilitating the rise of capitalism.

In religion, Marx and Weber agree that the church helped in transmitting ideologies in the society. Weber believed that prophets used religion to influence the society to embrace their charismatic ideologies. Similarly, Marx claimed that the dominant class used religion to advance their ideas in the society.

Differences in the Perspectives of Marx and Weber

Marx claimed that the rise of the capitalist system was unavoidably predicted by history. In addition, the adoption of the capitalist mode of production was triggered by the changes that occurred in the material basis of the society (Dillon 116).

Weber disagreed with this perspective by arguing that the rise of capitalism was not inevitably predicted by history. According to Weber, capitalism emerged by chance due to the conditions that characterized the society. In particular, Weber believes that the Protestant ethic is the main factor that motivated the society to adopt the capitalist system of production.

Marx opposed capitalism by arguing that socialism and eventually communism would be the solution to the problems associated with the capitalist system. However, Weber did not embrace any socialist idea (Hallan 136). He argued that capitalism developed because of hard work, systematic economic activity, and frugality rather than mere exploitation of workers. In this regard, Weber did not believe that capitalism should be replaced with socialism.

Marx believed that religion provided only temporary relief to misery by blunting the senses of the proletariats. He argued that religion was just an opium of the masses that enabled the proletariats to bear their suffering rather than to find solutions to their problems. Weber, on the other hand, argued that religion helped people to achieve their interests (Goldstein 115-151). For example, he noted that the magicians helped individuals to access material needs such as food.

According to Marx, religion was a means of legitimizing the status quo that exists in the capitalist system. Marx believed that capitalists use religion to justify their mode of production and accumulation of wealth at the expense of workers. Weber, on the other hand, perceived religion as a means of achieving social change. According to Weber, the “exemplary prophet challenges the status quo by living an exemplary life” (Dillon 121). This encourages the society to achieve the necessary change and to address the problems of the society.


Marx’s argument that the rise of capitalism was unavoidably predicted by history is valid to some extent. Undoubtedly, the society has progressively moved from primitive communism, ancient, and feudal systems of production to capitalism. Additionally, production for profit through improved efficiency continues to be the main factor that sustains modern capitalism. Although the problems of capitalism such as exploitation of workers and falling profits still exist, capitalism has not collapsed as predicted by Marx.

Moreover, the growth of capitalism in the modern society is mainly driven by the consumption among the middle class rather than the proletariats as Marx claimed. Undoubtedly, the emergence of international trade and globalization has facilitated the growth of capitalism in the modern society. However, Marx did not pay much attention to the importance of globalization and international trade. Moreover, he fails to account for the rise of capitalism only in the west rather than the entire world.

Weber’s claim that capitalism rose as a result of conditions such as industrial revolution and changes in governance is valid. These conditions continue to promote economic growth and development of capitalism. Weber’s argument that the Protestant ethic led to capitalism has both flaws and strengths. The strengths include the fact that modern capitalists still focus on frugality, diligence, and cost benefit analysis of the most profitable investment alternatives.

However, the flaw is that religion alone through the Protestant ethic is not likely to have contributed to the rise of capitalism. Undoubtedly, capitalism existed in countries such as India where the Protestant ethic was not observed. In the modern society, there is very little connection between accumulation of wealth and salvation. Thus, religion does not play a major role in the growth of capitalism.


The perspectives of Marx and Weber concerning religion and the rise of capitalism are similar and different in several ways. Both of them agree that capitalism rose due to the desire to accumulate a lot of wealth, as well as, technological advancements and changes in governance systems.

However, Marx claimed that the rise of capitalism was unavoidably predicted by history, whereas Weber believed that capitalism developed due to the Protestant ethic. Weber considered religion as a means of achieving the needs of the society, whereas Marx believed that religion only provides temporary alleviation of the problems of the society.

Works Cited

Appelrouth, Scott. Classical and Contemporary Sociological Theory. London: Sage, 2008. Print.

Dillon, Michele. Introduction to Sociological Theory. New York: John Wiley and Sons, 2009. Print.

Goldstein, Warren. “The Dilectics of Religious Rationalization and Secularization: Max Weber and Ernst Bloch.” Critical Sociology 2.3 (2005): 115-151. Print.

Hallan, Kenneth. Contemporary Social and Sociological Theory. London: Sage, 2010. Print.

Yuill, Chris. “Marx: Capitalism, Alienation and Health.” Social Theory and Health 3.2 (2005): 126-143. Print.

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Growth of Modernity by Marx and Weber Essay

September 21, 2021 by Essay Writer


Modernity was a result of interrelated processes (Mitchell, 2009). The main features of modernity include rapid and continuous growth of different productive capacities which gave way to new forms of economic activities. The economic activities on the other hand gave way to new ways of handling work (Sayer, 1991).

Capitalism was the precursor in industrialization, which is extensively addressed in theories of Karl Marx and later, Max Weber. The two theorists agree that Capitalism was initially used in basic trade and agriculture in the nineteenth century, but later became the driving force of industrialization.

With the entrant of capitalism, new institutions and attitudes were adopted by the society. The new wave of reform affected both entrepreneurs as well as workers. For entrepreneurs, it was the pursuit of increased profits, while the labourers needed better pay and better working conditions (Marx, 1934). The entrepreneurs knew that labour was the key element in attaining the productivity that was needed in order to attain the profits.


Karl Marx goes down in history as among the theorists who argued that the dehumanizing nature of work conditions led to a reaction which saw workers sabotaging work, skipping duty, or simply sitting in without doing much.

This eventually gave rise to the more organized form of trade unionism that we experience today. Marx’s theory would be correctly interpreted to mean that the working conditions experienced today is a product of the resistance that people in the industrialization era put up in order to deal with the dehumanizing working conditions (Marx, 1971).

However, Marx has a very interesting theory about labour. In his writings, he states that man is most natural when he is doing things that other “animals” do. Such include eating, sleeping and procreating (Sayer, 1991). This theory suggests that man only works because it is the only way to ensure that the self survives. Accordingly, it is not in man’s nature to work, and hence any labour is enforced labour.

Among the subjects widely addressed by both Marx and Weber is the effect that division of labour had on the society. Marx who was first to write on this subject (note that Weber is largely perceived as a student of Karl Marx) argued that division of labour led to the division of the society along classes.

Marx’s argument was that different positions in the labour market came with specific types of prestige, which contributed to a deeper stratification of societal classes. “The worker becomes poorer, the more wealth he produces, the more his production increases in power and extent” (Marx, 1971).

Marx also wrote that the entrepreneurs treated workers like commodities and his observation was that with more production, the lesser the value the entrepreneur attached to the workers. To this end, Marx theorized that no matter the work that labourers did, there was no way they could manage to get off their stratified social class of unending want. In addition, he theorized that pay increases was only tantamount to rewarding the slaves better, but would do nothing to enhance the labourer’s dignity or significance (Marx, 1934).

Society stratification

Weber on the other hand theorized that capitalism relaxed the stratified classes. His argument was that while previously there used to be a master who ruled over the peasant, capitalism enabled the replacement of this with a boss-employee relationship. Reading Marx’s arguments on different issues, one gets the impression that he would simply define the boss-employee relationship as mere semantics. (Karl,1959).

In his writings, Marx has a very convincing theory of how man becomes a slave of his own work regardless of the payment he or she gets for the job. He theorizes that a worker becomes enslaved to his work in two ways; first, he receives work which he applies his labour to; and secondly, the work becomes a mean of subsistence to him (Sayer, 1991). This means that without the work, he looses his means of subsistence.

Yet according to the Marxist theory, this marks the culmination of slavery because the worker becomes the physical subject of his work. Weber’s argument however appears more real in today’s society especially considering that employees are more aware of their rights and are often times able to relate with their employers much better than a servant would relate to their master in pre-industrialization era.

The materialistic culture

Marx defines economic acquisition as a form of deviant fetishism (Veblen, 2002), something that Weber contends to. The sociological theory by Weber states that the materialism culture that took a grip on the society changed the spiritual worship attached to abstractions to worship of material things or concrete goods. To this end, Weber contends that materialism promised freedom to people who were oppressed by poverty, and in the process replaced the promise of “the afterlife where poverty will be no more” with real tangible solutions.

Karl Marx had stated that modernisation would eventually need a new form of rationalizing the society, especially after it emerged that religious beliefs would no longer be the assurance that people needed as an assurance for a better life. Marx however states that any good thing that modernity and labour creates would only work to the benefit of the high stratified class. “…labour produces marvels for the rich, but produces privation for the worker.

It produces Palaces, but hovels for the worker, beauty for the rich, but deformity to the worker…” (Marx, 1934). This opinion is also shared by Weber, who acknowledges that capitalism would no doubt result in changed values, consequently giving rise to the need for a replacement of the traditional morals which were codified in religion.

The main contention between Marx and Weber regarding capitalism is in the way the two theorists address the determinant quality that arose from capitalism.

Marx theorised that capitalism would replicate itself in order to survive (Veblen, 2002). However, Weber theorized that capitalism would face several challenges especially because it posed threats to traditional values. His theory indicates that individual players in the society would loose their ability to make independent choices because the pressure to succumb to societal norms would be too great.

Marx and Weber share the belief that human actions affect the development of the society (Sayer, 1991). The two agree that human actions determine the structure of the society, the changes and the transformation that happens in the same societies. The two theorists however differ on the things that have the most effect of the development of the societal. By reading theories by the Marx and Weber, one notes that Marx believe group activities have the most effect on the society.

As such, he lays more emphasis on unions, lobby groups, organisations and even political parties (Mitchell, 2009). Weber on the other hand has a different view of things. His theories suggest that individual actions are just as important in shaping societal development just as group actions are. Weber’s theories and writings offer a more detailed perception of how individual response to the factors in the society interact with groups in order to develop a more wholesome society.


Weber constructs a methodology of understanding the interactions between an individual and the society that revolves around motivation (Sayer, 1991). To this, he argues that though motivation explains why individuals interact with the society, other factors such as economic situation of the individual versus the larger society, and the division of labour are all factors that create challenges in the society.

He notes that constraints brought to the society by prevailing economic conditions create pressure in the society, which can only be resolved through appropriate human actions. This in turn constructs the social environment. This admission by Weber somehow confirms the assertion by Marx that capitalism need to reproduce itself in order to continue existing.


Another of Marx’s theories that rings true to date is the theory of value, which relates to the crucial role that money plays in the coordination of the capitalist society. (Marx, 1934). Accordingly, he rules out that barter can regulate trade since commodities share only one thing in common; the value that is created through human labour.

Besides, Marx argues that barter trade would create disunity in the societal, since it would be hard to ascertain the value of each of the circulating product in any given market. To measure the exact value of the product, Marx suggests that the labour embodied in them would have to be measured. “Value is only a representation in objects, an objective expression of the relationship between men, the social relation…., and the reciprocal productive activity” (Marx,1971).


A reflection of the theories offered by Karl Marx and Max Weber reveals that the theorists got some facts about the situations during their time and the effect that such would have on the future. Weber had the chance to review Marx’s writing and come up with better theories, which he did. However, this is not to mean that Marx did not contribute to the intelligent thought as Weber did. Marx for instance theorised that human misery cannot hinder the propagation of the human race.

This remains true to date. The societies that are perceived as most disadvantaged (at least economically) contribute to give birth at higher rates than is the case in the developed societies. The theories by Marx and Weber regarding religion and its reduced significance in light of better economic times is also true, and so is their theory regarding the need for something else to take the place of religion in the wake of increased economic fortunes in order to hold the moral fabric of the society together.

The theories by Marx and Weber could further explain the materialistic culture that serve in the world today, where the wealthy want to make more wealth. Incidentally, the gap between the poor and the rich in different countries continues to widen thus meaning that the theory by Marx regarding capitalism stratifying the society along social classes is true to some extent.

Weber’s theory on the same is however not rendered completely irrelevant because there are people who are able to emerge from some of the low-income groups and rise through the economic stratifications through wealth creation opportunities presented in different economies. Though the theories do not fully make us understand sociology as illustrated by Bessant & Watts (2007), they give as a hint of why the society is in its current situation


Bessant, J. & Watts, R. (Ed.). (2007). Sociology Australia. Melbourne: Allen & Unwin.

Karl, M. (1959). Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts of 1844. Moscow: Progress publishers.

Marx, K. (1934). Letters to Kugelmann. New York: International Publishers.

Marx, K. (1971). Theories of Surplus Value: Part III. Moscow: Progress Publishers.

Mitchell, T. (2009). The Stage of Modernity. Retrieved from

Sayer, D. (1991). Capitalism and Modernity: An Excursus on Marx and Weber. New York: Routledge.

Veblen, T. (2002). The Socialist Economics of Karl Marx and his Followers. Web.

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Max Weber’s Rationality Theory Essay

September 21, 2021 by Essay Writer

Rationality has been studied and defined by both philosophers and sociologists over a long period of time now. Philosophers use reason and rationality as their major methods when it comes to the analysis of data collected from well defined observation methods (Sica, 2004, 2). In sociology and related disciplines, rationality of a given situation or decision depends mainly on whether it is optimal in nature or not.

On the other hand, persons or organisations are said to be rational if their actions are optimal as far as achievement of objectives is concerned. An optimal action refers to the pursuance of the most desired outcomes within limits that have either been expressed or implied. Sociological rationalisation refers to the process of series of actions and engagements by human beings with an aim of achieving a purposive and well calculated ends which does not rely on emotions, moral considerations, or traditions (Farganis, 2008, 35).

Rationalisation is considered as a key characteristic of the modernisation process. In the need for social services, one can talk of rational allocation of available resources. When it comes to organisational operations, proposed corporate strategies can be said to be optimally rational.

Many sociological researchers have tried to investigate the concept of rationality in order to understand it fully. They have defined rationality as the process and success in the pursuit of a given objective regardless of the nature of the objectives (Pampel, 2007, 24). This implies that any act of rationality is not screened in terms of its ethicality, morality, or other forms of criticisms.

For philosophers, a high quality rationale ought to be free from the influence of emotions, personal preferences, and any other feelings that may create bias. Many rationality theories have been advanced by researchers to explain this concept. The essay seeks to critically analyse Weber’s idea of rationality and the conclusions that he drew about the effects of rationalisation on modern life.

Max Weber was a renowned German classical sociologist who lived between 1864 and 1920. Weber, as a sociologist, was more concerned with the interpretation of the different actions in the social settings. He defined sociology as a science which seeks to understand and interpret human behavior with an aim of being able to explain the causes of given behaviour/action, the course which they would take, and the impacts of the behaviours/actions (Sica, 2004, 5).

His theory provides a subjective description of factors that are thought to influence the various social actions which in turn define a given society. In his theory, Weber distinguishes between action and behaviour. He notes that action occurs as a result of deliberate and conscious process where people try to attach meaning to their actions as well as understanding their environment. Behaviour, on the other hand, is described by Weber as an automatic reaction which occurs unconsciously or with little consciousness.

Weber proposed that human action/behaviour could best be understood by exploring how people regard their actions and what they associate their interactions, actions, and experiences with ((Pampel, 2007, 33). In order to understand the various social actions and behaviours, Max Weber formulated different types of rationality which were ideals. These ideals are the sociologists’ intellectual constructs that can be used in exploring historical facts.

He categorised rationality (action-based) into four distinct types. According to him, there is the purposive rational action which is also called instrumental rationality action. This type of rationality is associated with the expectations concerning the behavior of human beings or things that exist in the surrounding (Morrison, 1995, 212). The behavioural expectations are the ways through which a given actor uses to achieve some goals or ends. The ends, from Weber’s judgment, are pursued in a rational manner and following well calculated moves.

The second type of rational action that was identified by Weber is the belief or value-oriented rationality. This type involves actions executed by an actor subject to the intrinsic reasons which may include ethical, religious, and aesthetic value systems. The actions, however, are not judged whether they will lead to success or not. This contradicts the philosophical perspective which considers the means in justifying the ends and vise versa.

Affectual rationality was the third approach of interpreting rational action. Weber explained that this type is determined by the actor’s affectual orientation, feelings or emotions. He also emphasized that this type of rationality was on the intermediate position of what can be regarded as meaningfully oriented rationality. This type shares some characteristics with the philosopher’s perspective of rational actions.

The last type of interpreting social actions is the traditional rationality. This is determined by the existing norms or habits in a given society (Farganis, 2008, 56). Weber argued that some human actions are controlled by what one has learnt over time, and he/she acts in a given way not because he/she chooses to, but because he/she thinks that it is how it is expected to be done. His classifications were based on the most dominant type of behaviour orientation and its interpretation.

However, Weber noted that no single type can be used in understanding the actions in the environment; instead, integration of the various types of rationality was common among human beings (Ritzer & Goodman, 2003, 110). He further emphasised that the first two types of rationality were the most common and reliable in the interpretation of social actions. Affectual and traditional rationality were considered as being details of the first two.

From a critical point of view, Weber’s classification of the types of interpreting social actions can be considered as having both some strengths as well as weaknesses. On the positive, the kinds of rationality proposed provide an easy way of interpreting behaviour. It does not discriminate some behaviours on the basis of their being irrational.

They provide a basis for interpreting behaviour depending on the criterion used. A given social act may not meet the purposive interpretation but may be explained using another kind, for instance the belief-oriented or the affectual type. On the other hand, actions whose bases are traditional may not be explained by the purposive rationality.

Some loopholes in Weber’s ideas on the interpretation of social actions have been identified. From a Habermasian’s point of view, the approach lacks the consideration of social context (Pampel, 2007, 40). It also underestimates the potential of social power as far as transforming existing norms and traditions is concerned.

Moreover, the feminist proponents have criticised the idea citing the need by Weber’s idea to maintain male dominance as misguided (Morrison, 1995, 218). This is mainly as prescribed by the first and the fourth types of rationality. From ancient traditions, most social actions have been shaped around masculine values and powers. From Weber’s perspective, these should always be considered when it comes to the interpretation of social actions.

Another prominent sociologist by the name Etzioni used Weber’s proposals for the interpretation of human behaviour to re-construct an understanding of social actions (Morrison, 1995, 248). He argued that purposive rationality is controlled by the consideration of existing norms.

These norms regulate how human beings ought to act. Etzioni also points out that affective rationality plays a central role in helping people to socialise with one another. He emphasized that these two considerations are key in the development of a new decision-making model as opposed to Weber’s proposal.

Apart from the four types of interpreting social actions, Weber also proposed four types of rationality. The types are: practical, theoretical, substantive, and formal rationality. Most studies point out that Weber was more concerned with formal rationality which focused mostly on and contributed to the understanding of historical developments. This process led to rationaliasation which helped in the transformation of the Western world (Pampel, 2007, 49).

Weber was curious in wanting to know the historical trends that shaped the success of rationalisation in the Western states and its failure to take effect in other countries. He was able to single out religion as a major force that led to rationalisation in the West. The Protestant ethic in the Western world significantly contributed to its rationalisation. Weber continued to argue that the Protestant ethic was so intense that it caused the ultimate emergence of capitalism in this part of the world (Farganis, 2008, 46).

His focus on the role of religion in other countries showed that the economic ethics taught by Confucianism and Hinduism hampered rationalisation and thus preventing the emergence of capitalism in the countries in which the kinds of religion were practiced, especially in China and India respectively.

Moreover, Weber’s rationality theory focused on the various types of authority. He concentrated on the forces of legitimate dominion in human relationships. Weber developed three basic types/structures of authority; traditional, charismatic, and rational-legal. This can be considered as being the ideal types of authority that researchers can use when comparing given phenomena (Sica, 2004, 105).

Of the three types of authority, Weber was more concerned with understanding the rational-legal structure, especially the way in which it was organised. The rational-legal authority was organised in a bureaucratic manner. This type enhanced rationalisation through the empirical estimations that were made to it. It is controlled by rules and set laws of the land or a given organisation.

Traditional authority, on the other hand, is concerned with the belief systems of established societies which are manifested through their practices and norms. A given authority is recognised as being legitimate due to its continued practice (Pampel, 2007, 57). This type of authority is often associated with patriarchalism, patrimonialism, feudalism, and gerontocracy.

Furthermore, charismatic authority refers to the belief that develop towards leaders perceived to have extraordinary capabilities. The powers possessed by the leader should be recognised by the followers since they play a central role in every form of authority (Ritzer & Goodman, 2003, 121).

Organisations with have some form of charismatic characteristics will mostly have a charismatic leader. The greatest challenge in charismatic organisations or groups is the replacement of the leader incase of a vacancy. As a result, organisations under such authority have resorted to the routinisation of charisma and hence the adoption of either rational-legal type of authority or the traditional authority (Morrison, 1995, 271).

From Weber’s perspective, rationalisation has taken root in virtually all spheres, particularly in the field of economy, religion, law, art, and the city and thus affecting the modern human life. According to Weber, modern rationalisation in the West has been enhanced by religious (Calvinism) economic ethics and capitalism as well as the rational-legal authority.

It is the process of rationalisation, according to Weberian sociology, that is responsible for modernity (Sica, 2004, 124). The different types of rationality discussed earlier are used to explain the rationalisation process. Additionally, Weber saw rationalisation as being similar to disenchantment. Disenchantment can be defined as the process of making the world devoid of mystery, magic, and other spiritual forces (Morrison, 1995, 303).

From a religious point of view, rationalisation is the equivalent of secularisation. This implies that most social sectors and practices are not controlled by religion and its institutions. The process of demystifying the world of the numerous gods, secularisation, and rationalisation was propelled by the emergence of science and capitalism (Ritzer & Goodman, 2003, 137).

According to Weber, the process of rationalising the world was unstoppable since despite the fact that the process started in the West, its impact has since been felt virtually everywhere (Morrison, 1995, 277).

He sees the process as a defining characteristic for modernity which will ultimately make the world emptier. This is because rationality does not regard human emotions, traditions, affective human ties, and mystery. Instead, human relations are viewed from economic relations, impersonal relationships as well as expertise orientation which he referred to as professionalisation.

Weber thinks that the values which used to hold the social fabric together in the past have been diminished in the recent past as a result of the rationalisation process (Ritzer & Goodman, 2003, 149). Formally creative arts, particularly music and painting have henceforth lost their value due to the same process. From a Weberian point of view, the modern life is drawing more to being disenchanted and rationalised.

The essay has critically elaborated Max Weber’s complex idea of rationality and rationalisation as well as the conclusions he reached concerning the impacts of rationalisation on the modern life. He noted that rationalisation is a continuous process in the modern society.

Some of the forces that Weber identified as propagating the process include; Protestantism, economic systems, democracy, subject knowledge, and bureaucratic organisation of the society. He also notes that the future of the modern life lies in the intrigues of status, class, and party/power. We can therefore conclude from a Weberian perspective that modern times are shaped by rationalisation and intellectualisation processes.

Reference List

Farganis, James (ed.) (2008) Readings in Social Theory- The Classical Tradition to Post-Modernism. 5th edition. Boston: McGraw Hill, pp. 35-107

Morrison, David K. (1995) Marx, Durkheim Weber. London: SAGE, pp. 212-255; 270-304

Pampel, Francis (2007) Sociological Lives and Ideas – An Introduction to the Classical Theorists. New York: Worth Plc. pp. 23-58

Ritzer, George. & Goodman, Douglas J. (2003) Sociological Theory. Sixth Edition. Boston: McGraw Hill ‘Max Weber’ pp. 108-152

Sica, Alan (2004) Max Weber and the new century. Transaction Plc. 1-130

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Social Conflict in the Work of Marx and Weber Compare and Contrast Essay

September 21, 2021 by Essay Writer


Philosophers describe conflict as the disagreement of authority. According to these philosophers, power can take on different forms depending on the person at the helm. While some form of power might be humane and manipulative, another might as well be coercive and physical. While some people in power might choose to lead in an assertive and bargaining way, others decide to do so in an inductive and rational manner.

Due to the variations in the forms of power, there is usually the likelihood of manifestation of conflict. In this light, social conflict therefore addresses the confrontation of social powers. Ideally, all social theorists seek to address power or conflict based on social powers and their dialectics. (Cattell, 1957, p. 23)This essay seeks to examine the status of social conflict in the work of both Karl Marx and Max Weber.

Karl Marx

According to Marx, the society encompasses an existing balance of opposing forces that give rise to social change by their constant tension and struggle. In presenting his theory, Marx based his vision on an evolutionary point, which was contrary to the theories existing at that time.

For him, tension and struggle rather than passive development was the driving force of progress. Marx considered strife the father of all good things and social conflict the center of chronological progression. This philosophy presented by Marx deviated from earlier versions but corresponded with the 19th century view of society.

According to Marx, the need for adequate food and drink, of housing and for clothing were man’s chief goals at the beginning of the race, and these needs are still fundamental when efforts are made to scrutinize the intricate structure of contemporary society. However, man’s strive against nature does not stop once these pursuits are attained. If translated literally, this statement means that meeting one need gives rise to a host of others and this becomes a sort of a vicious cycle. (Giddens, 1983, p. 101)

In their bid to gratify both the principal and inferior needs, men engage in aggressive cooperation immediately they leave the primeval, shared period of development. According to Marx, specialization brings with it opposition of ideas from the different classes. In his hypotheses, Marx claimed that all social relations between men, as well as the existing systems of ideas are exclusively rooted in the past.

He also maintained that, although class strives, had marked all history, the competitors in the struggle had changed in the course of time. Although there was obviously a similarity between the travelers of the middle ages who fought against guild masters and today’s industrial workers who take on capitalists, the contestants were merely the same characters placed in different situations. (Blau, 1964, p. 23)

For Marx, the analysis of social class, class organizations and modifications are crucial to understanding capitalism and other social structures or means of production. In his theory, work and labor, and ownership of property with the means of production were the only ways that could be used to explain and define classes.

Today’s capitalism according to Marx exhibits these economic factors than in any other period in history. While the previous societies contained alliances that could have been considered classes, these were mere elites who were not wholly based on economic factors. (Bottomore, 1983, p. 96)

According to Marx, capitalism has two major groupings namely the bourgeoisie and proletariat. It is actually important to understand that Marx viewed the structure of society vis-à-vis its major classes, and the resistance between them as the force of alteration in this structure. Indeed, Marx theory was not based on balance or consensus.

Conflict was forever present within the societal structure and the existing classes were not meant to be purposeful elements maintaining the structure. According to Marx, this structure was like a major ingredient in the struggle of classes. Indeed, Marx only sought to explain his conflict view based on his observation of the 19th century society. (Marx, 1971, p. 65)

Marx defined class as simply the possession of property. In his explanation, he claimed that such an ownership gives a person the power to bar other people from the property and to utilize it for personal intentions. By looking at the bourgeoisie, landowners and proletariats, one realizes that their main asset was property and not revenue or status.

Indeed, these are determined by supply and expenditure, which itself definitely replicates the production and power associations of classes. According to Marx, this makes the issue of class a hypothetical and recognized relationship among individuals. In a bid to fit in to one of the three classes, there arises an informal class membership force otherwise known as class interest.

Due to the identical class conditions, individuals in the different classes tend to act in the same manner. This leads them to unconsciously form a kind of reciprocal reliance, a society, and shared interest interconnected with common revenue of yield or of wages. Because of this common interest, what follows is a formation of an interest class meant to protect their property. The formation of the interest classes often leads one group in to a struggle with the opposite group. (Marx, 1971, p. 68)

Initially, the interests associated with land possession and rental fee are dissimilar to those of the bourgeois property. However, as the society matures, there is usually a merger between capital and land ownership, which in turn forces a coalition between landowners and bourgeoisie.

At the end, the association of production, the natural struggle between proletariat and bourgeoisie ends up being the determinant of all the events that follow. According to Marx, this constant struggle is necessary for any society that is maturing since its absence would ground a society to a halt. At the beginning of class conflict, the struggle between the various classes is usually carried out at individual production units.

As capitalism matures, the rising inequality between the living conditions of the bourgeoisie and the proletariat extends the strife to coalitions across industrial units. With the passage of time, there is a manifestation of class conflict within the societal level. According to Marx, this new level leads to a rise in class-consciousness, which ultimately leads to the clamor for political power. This therefore transforms the existing classes in to political power, which is the other form of class. (Marx, 1971, p. 70)

According to Marx, the spread of political power is determined by the power of production. Production grants political power, which the bourgeois class uses to legalize and safeguard their property and resultant group affairs. Class relations are therefore political and in a mature society, the government is involved with the bourgeoisie affairs. This fact leads to a state of restlessness in the remaining classes something that widens the rift between them even further.

Additionally, the state of the already exploited worker deteriorates further and in most cases, this leads to the collapse of the entire social structure. Ultimately, this transforms the class struggle in to a blue-collar revolution. In effect, this wipes away the existing classes and gives rise to a classless society. With the collapse of classes, the political power needed to protect the bourgeoisie against the laborers becomes obsolete leading to the collapse of political power and the state at large. (Cattell, 1957, p. 5)

Marx’s emphasis on class conflict as representing the dynamics of social change, his consciousness that change was not accidental but the result of a conflict of interests, and his observation of social relations based on political power were new findings in the society. However, the passage of time and history has made most of his suppositions and prophecies obsolete.

Today, capitalist possession and the control of production have been divided. Instead of workers becoming homogenous as Marx predicted, they are now divided in to various specialization groups. On the other hand, the strengthening of the middle class and communal mobility has further weakened the class solidity thus discrediting Marx theory in a large manner.

Instead of there being a big disparity between the rich and the poor, there has been a social intensity and an increasing highlight on social fairness. Finally, the growth of worker-oriented laws has weakened the bourgeoisie power that Marx predicted would characterize the modern society. Most importantly, the demonstration of conflict between laborers and capitalist has been institutionalized through combined negotiation legislation and the validation of strikes.

Despite the exhibit of chronological trends discrediting these theories, Marx’s sociological outlines have much value. Of importance, his highlighting on conflict, classes, and their association to political influence, and on communal alteration was a dominant perspective that the modern society should not abandon. Indeed the spirit, if not the essence of his hypothesis merits further development to guide the modern society. (Giddens, 1983, p. 105)

Max Weber

Marx saw the division of classes as the mainly important foundation of class conflict. Weber’s scrutiny of class is similar to Marx’s, but he discusses class in the framework of social stratification in a more general manner. Weber claims that class and social status are different dimensions of the social structure and both are noteworthy contributors of social difference. In fact, the way Weber treats class and status is an indication of the manner in which the substance basis of society is related to its perception.

Social conflict can therefore be a result of the substance or the ideological basis. Unlike Marx, Weber did not dwell on explaining how class conflict occurs but he highlighted the role of power, domination and societal action in the matter. Weber defines power as the aptitude of an actor to recognize his will in a social action, even against the will of team players. He relates this to the ability to sway resources in a fastidious sphere of influence.

Therefore, economic power is the ability to manage substance resources in order to guide production, dominate accretion and dictate expenditure. Societal power as outlined by Weber includes monetary power, societal power, lawful or political power among other centers of influence. Although controlling these spheres of resources usually go together, they characterize diverse mechanisms of power and are therefore theoretically distinct. (Giddens, 1983, p. 108)

On the other hand, Weber described domination as the implementation of power. Therefore, possessing power in any sphere of life resulted in to automatic dominance. In what he called charismatic domination, Weber claimed that some individuals might use inspiration, coercion, communication or even leadership to direct and coordinate social action. This charisma according to Weber usually emerges during times of social crisis.

Because this leadership tends to be personalized, it is short-lived and does not extend beyond the rule of its founder. In exercising this power, the leader often finds himself in a form of conflict with the subjects. In traditional authority, there is absolute loyalty to the leadership. In most cases, the lines of this authority are almost non-existent and there is no clear differentiation between private and public life. (Shortell, n.d)

In the matter of communal action, Weber claims that it is oriented based on a common conviction of association. In other words, the actors believe that by some means they belong together in a certain way. The actions of these actors come from and are co-coordinated by this feeling. This is in contrast to societal action, which is somehow oriented to a coherent modification of welfare. The motivation is therefore not gotten by a sense of communal rationale, but relatively, identification of common good.

On the issue of class, Weber identified three distinct classes, which included a specific fundamental section of actors, which rests entirely on monetary interests and is embodied under an environment of labor and product markets. According to Weber, the possession of property defines the major class difference. Property owners have explicit advantages and in some cases even a monopoly in the marketing of commodities.

The same property owners have a limited access to the foundations of wealth creation, by virtue of possession and management of the markets. Unlike Marx, Weber did not believe that class interests necessarily led to consistency is social action. Additionally, Weber did not concur with Marx that proletarian revolutionary action would arise because of structural inconsistency.

In certain situations, Weber believed that there was a possibility of societal action developing from a common class situation. This meant that the extent of the contrasts between the property owners and the property less laborers must first be translucent to the laborers in order for communal action around the issue of class to crop up. (Shortell, n.d)


Both Marx and Weber have addressed the status of social conflict albeit in different words. Weber’s view on the status of class conflict was not much different from the one outlined by Marx although both views are stated differently. On his part, Marx discussed the repercussions of class in terms of the substance conditions of survival. He also classified property possession in a definitive manner and in light of capitalist class relations.

Additionally, Marx did not think that the variations in the kind of labor were important though he accepted that specialization had greater value than unskillful labor. On his part, Weber believed that the disparities in wages resulted in considerable substantial conditions thus dissimilar models of social action. Weber’s theory also suggests that rivalry among those without property can be based on lucid reasons, and not false awareness as Marx suggested.

Reference List

Blau, P. (1964) Exchange and Power in Social Life. New York: Wiley. p. 23-46.

Bottomore, T. (1983) A Dictionary of Marxist Thought. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. p. 96-103.

Cattell, R. (1957) Personality and Motivation. New York: World Book. p. 5-16.

Giddens, A. (1983) Capitalism and Modern Social Theory: An Analysis of the Writings of Marx, Durkheim and Max Weber, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p. 101-109.

Marx, K. (1971) Preface to a Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy. Tr. S. W. Ryanzanskaya, edited by M. Dobb. London: Lawrence & Whishart. p. 65-81.

Shortell, T. (n.d). Weber’s Theory of Social Class. [Online] Brooklyn College. Available at: <> .

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