Lecture 14 Reading Summary

And more money without enjoying life devoid

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Unformatted text preview: tic conditions. - Weber’s historical explanation of the spirit of capitalism is that capitalism educates and selects the economic subjects that it needs through a process of economic survival of the fittest. According to Weber, the spirit of capitalism was present before capitalism itself. Weber distinguishes the spirit of capitalism from those who submitted to capitalism without reserve as an uncontrolled impulse. - Ex. At all periods of history, wherever it was possible, there has been ruthless acquisition bound to no ethical norms whatever (like war and piracy). Pre- capitalist societyà༎ rational utilization of capital in a permanent enterprise and the rational capitalistic organization of labor had not yet become dominant forces in the determination of economic activity. The most important opponent capitalism has had to go up against was traditionalism. - See examples of traditionalism, in terms of employment wages) on page 7,8 and 9 According to Weber’s theory: labor must be performed as if it were an absolute end in itself, a calling. But such an attitude is by no means a product of nature. It cannot be evoked by low wages or high ones alone, but can only be the product of a long and arduous process of education. The chances of overcoming traditionalism are greatest on account of the religious upbringing. The rising strata of lower industrial middle class represented the spirit of capitalism and not the commercial aristocracy. The management, for instance, of a bank, a wholesale export business, a large retail establishment, or of a large putting- out enterprise dealing with goods produced in homes, is certainly only possible in the form of a capitalistic enterprise; however, they may also be carried out by a traditionalistic spirit. Traditionalistic businessà༎ one considers the spirit which animated the entrepreneur: the traditional manner of life, the traditional rate of profit, the traditional amount of work, the traditional manner of regulating the relationships with labor, and the essentially traditional circle of customers and the manner of attracting new ones. All these dominated the conduct of the business, were at the basis of the ethos of this group of • • • • • • businessmen. - The idyllic state collapsed under the p...
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