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SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource
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SociologyExchange.co.uk Shared Resource

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  1. Religion & Social Change 1 Max Weber – The Protestant Ethic & the Spirit of Capitalism (1905)
  2. <ul><li>Max Weber </li></ul><ul><li>(1864-1920) </li></ul>
  3. Overview <ul><li>Weber is a Social Action theorist </li></ul><ul><li>Studies interaction and how humans make sense of the world </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on the social construction of reality </li></ul><ul><li>Verstehen </li></ul><ul><li>The importance of IDEAS in driving society </li></ul>
  4. Weber at war with Marx’s ghost <ul><li>Marx - ECONOMY = CHANGE IN RELIGION </li></ul><ul><li>Weber </li></ul><ul><li>RELIGION = CHANGE IN ECONOMY </li></ul><ul><li>Weber challenges the materialism and economic </li></ul><ul><li>determinism of Marxist theory. </li></ul><ul><li>Weber notes how society is shaped by human ideas </li></ul><ul><li>rather than action directed by ideology that is </li></ul><ul><li>manipulated by an economic elite. </li></ul>
  5. Weber and Industrialisation <ul><li>Weber studied how societies ‘took off’ </li></ul><ul><li>Interested in the variables that led to economic growth and the rise of industrial society </li></ul><ul><li>Conducted a comparative analysis of many societies and identified the main factor that caused the birth of the industrial age </li></ul>
  6. That key factor was…. <ul><li>The Protestant faith </li></ul>
  7. More precisely <ul><li>ASCETIC CALVINIST </li></ul><ul><li>PROTESTANTISM </li></ul><ul><li>THE RISE OF </li></ul><ul><li>WESTERN CAPITALISM </li></ul>
  8. John Calvin
  9. The importance of Calvinism <ul><li>‘ the elect’ – chosen to go to heaven – set by God before birth </li></ul><ul><li>Led to a psychological problem – ‘how did a Calvinist know that they had been chosen’ ? </li></ul><ul><li>Solution </li></ul><ul><li>‘ only CHOSEN PEOPLE would live a good life on Earth – so model behaviour was the goal’ </li></ul>
  10. The model behaviour was known as…. <ul><li>THE PROTESTANT ETHIC </li></ul>and this led to the rise of capitalism
  11. The Protestant Ethic <ul><li>This was an Ascetic </li></ul><ul><li>Abstaining from life’s pleasures </li></ul><ul><li>Living an austere lifestyle </li></ul><ul><li>Having strict self-discipline </li></ul>
  12. <ul><li>‘ Calling’ </li></ul><ul><li>Humans have a calling </li></ul><ul><li>This is their career – their way to please God </li></ul><ul><li>Hard work in one’s career was a sign of obedience and respect to God </li></ul>
  13. <ul><li>‘ making money’ </li></ul><ul><li>This was a sign of success and that you were pleasing God </li></ul><ul><li>‘ being frugal’ </li></ul><ul><li>People could not waste their wealth on luxuries </li></ul><ul><li>Money should be reinvested into businesses </li></ul>
  14. Protestant disapproved of… <ul><li>Time wasting </li></ul><ul><li>Laziness </li></ul><ul><li>Idle gossip </li></ul><ul><li>People sleeping more than needed </li></ul><ul><li>Sexual intercourse (only for procreation) </li></ul><ul><li>Hedonism (frivolous pub/dance-hall/ </li></ul><ul><li>gambling) </li></ul><ul><li>Sport for entertainment (only for health) </li></ul>
  15. The Spirit of Capitalism <ul><li>People always sought money (pirates and prostitutes) </li></ul><ul><li>This was at odds with capitalism </li></ul><ul><li>Speculation = gambling = frivolous = personal consumption </li></ul><ul><li>You became comfortable = no urge to stretch yourself </li></ul>
  16. Ascetic Protestantism attitude to wealth <ul><li>This attitude led to the creation of more profit and wealth </li></ul><ul><li>Helped the rise of capitalism = INVESTMENT </li></ul><ul><li>Capitalism is based upon: </li></ul><ul><li>rational organisation and action – a degree of self control and planning </li></ul>
  17. The effect of the Protestant Ethic <ul><li>These ethics led to – duties/obligations = a methodological, single-minded pursuit of a calling </li></ul><ul><li>Hard work </li></ul><ul><li>The rise of rational capitalism </li></ul>
  18. Question to consider <ul><li>“ According to Max Weber, how did the Protestant religion lead to the rise of capitalist economy” </li></ul>
  19. The death of religion <ul><li>Protestantism would sow the seeds of its own downfall </li></ul><ul><li>Rationale attitude to life ----- ‘this world focused’----control ----efficiency ----instrumental ----THIS WOULD LEAD TO ACCUMULATING WEALTH FOR WEALTH’S SAKE! </li></ul><ul><li>This would result to ‘WORSHIP OF MAMMON’… .vanity..self-obsession..greed </li></ul>
  20. Critique <ul><li>Calvinism – was against the pursuit of wealth (Stombart) </li></ul><ul><li>Many Calvinist nations were slow to develop </li></ul><ul><li>Calvinism emerged where industry had already developed (Kautsky) </li></ul><ul><li>Exclusion = not Calvin faith but their exclusion from mainstream society that was the key </li></ul>

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