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SOSC 1520 (8)


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Social Science
SOSC 1520
Rebecca Jubis

Chapter 8 begins with a broad overview of work values focusing on the evolutionary changes that have led to contemporary values that surround our labour force The chapter begins by defining work values and work orientations Defining values values are a set of standards used by society to assess their own and others behaviour For example honesty loyalty democracy and the freedom of speech Work orientations though similar to values are more narrowly defined as meanings associated with work by individuals in society Orientations are determined by what people consider important in their lives For example some people pursue work for materials gains while others may work for personal fulfillment Several different vales can coexist within society which can influence an individuals work orientation For example managerial ideologies and practices promote particular work values in order to gain compliance from their employees WORK VALUES ACROSS TIME AND SPACE Early History The vales attached to work have changed dramatically over the centuries Starting with ancient history the Greeks and Romans viewed work as brutalizing and uncivilized According to Greek mythology gods cursed human race by giving them the need to work These work values shaped the ruling class as they pursued politics warfare art and philosophy leaving physical labour to the slavesHebrew religious values were similar to those of the Greeks They viewed work as a divine punishment for the original sin of the first humans who ate from the tree of knowledge good and evil This perspective on work remained part of the early Christian worldview for many centuries th A more positive view of work was promoted by Saint Thomas Aquinas in the 13 century He ranked occupations based on their values to society So basically some forms of work were better than others Priest were assigned the highest rank followed by agriculture and then craft workers These values are evident in contemporary occupational status as the status of occupations involved in commercial activity bankers corporate owners and managers is higher up in the chain while farmers and crafts workers fall below th During the 16 century Protestant Reformation in Europe Martin Luthers ideas have had a big influence on work values He went beyond the belief that hard work was an atonement for the original sin and work should be done as a fulfillment of Gods will The extent of which workers shared these values is difficult to determine however it is evident that the ruling class is able to convince subordinates that hard work was a moral obligationProtestant Work Ethic Max Weber emphasized how Calvinist a Protestant group broke free from the views of mainstream churches and embraced hard work whilediscouraged worldly pleasures and celebrated the economy Weber argued that these religious beliefs gave rise to work values which promoted the growth of capitalismFreedom and Equality are additional values that fit in to the capital democratic belief system which assumes that workers are freely able to choose their jobs which immediately means that some people are wealthier than others due to their exceeding amount of hard work and smart choices This belief disregards that fact that some workers are advantaged at birth and some occupational groups are more protected in todays societyWork as SelfFulfillment The Humanist Traditionth The belief that work is virtuous in itself gave rise to another set of values in the 17 thand 18 century The humanist tradition grew out of the renaissance philosophies that humans from other species by their ability to consciously direct labour Human beings were viewed as
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