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Soc 233 Sept 28

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SOC 233
Kara Somerville

SOC 233 Sept 28, 2011 Weber Con’t … Spirit of Capitalism: The ideas and habits that favour the rational pursuit of economic gain.  The origins of capitalism come from religious ideas; macro approach.  Certain types of Protestantism (i.e., Cavinism) favoured rational pursuit of economic gain and worldly activities which had been given positive spiritual and moral meaning. Note – The ideas and habits that support capitalism.  Weber looked at several religions, not just Protestantism.  What replaces the salvation in Roman Catholicism, is worldly success in Protestantism.  Individuals were compelled to follow a nonreligious occupation to obtain wealth, and a decrease in overall spending.  eg) Buying a lot of material, expensive items, was a sin.  Discouraged from contribution to charity; this was seen as laziness and would lead to divine disfavour. Note – Investment is the essence of capitalism.  Modern capitalism grows partly out of the religious pursuit of wealth (i.e., Protestanism – Calvinism).  Leaders of economic systems were overwhelmingly Protestant.  Other religions failed to produce the idea systems that impelled individuals to be economic leaders in a capitalist system.  Accumulation is the road to salvation! Weber’s Understanding of Social Action  Sociology is concerned with the interpretive understanding of social action.  Action (subjective)  Interpretation of that Action  Reaction to Initial Action (objective). Note – Actions are social in nature; subjective. 4 Ideal Types of Social Action (Symblolic Interactionist Approach): 1. Instrumentally Rational Action / Rational  Rational means to get to a rational end.  eg) Sitting in class (rational means) to finish a degree and get a job (rational end).  Behaviour in which the means and the ends are related; connected in a rational way.  eg) I didn’t study for an exam and can’t get caught if I cheat, so I will let the person who can get me an A write the exam. 2. Value-Rational Action / Rational  Social action based on values and morals.  No rational “end;” regardless of outcome, you follow your values and morals when decision making.  eg) I know I can’t get caught cheating on an exam, but I can’t beca
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