Discussion Question



MaxWeber focuses on the idea of development of human society in lieu ofhis study on capitalism. According to Weber, capitalism is a symbolof progress which emerged from rationalization of work ethics,savings, parsimonious life style beliefs, attitudes and values(Ritzer, 2011). Capitalism industrialization occurred in certaincountries of Europe and not in any other place since CalvinistProtestants of these places adopted a life style of this worldlysimplicity by way of rationalizing their beliefs, values andreligious viewpoint to minimize consumption and encourage investmentin industry with an aim of promoting the world according to God’swill.

Durkheimon the other hand concentrates on the division of labor or rather aspecialized economic activity which has developed in human history.Conventional societies are themed by strong communal conscience knownas mechanical solidarity which is social bonds founded on mutualmoral sentiments which bring together members of pre-industrialsocieties. In contemporary societies, mechanical solidarity is partlydominated by organic solidarity in which social bonds are founded onspecialization that binds members of industrial societies.

Essentially,Weber and Durkheim embrace the fact that societies develop or growthroughout history. The emergence of capitalism as argued by Webercompares with the emergence of organic solidarity wherespecialization is key (Ritzer, 2011). The society remains united bythe fact that growth and development is in the center of the society.These sociological views of societies as described by Weber andDurkheim are a reflection of the human society regardless of time.Although they fail to factor in technological development as in KarlMarx’s argument, the two philosophers have keenly shown concern onindustrialization and capitalism.


Ritzer,George (2011). ClassicalSociological Theory, (6th Ed).Boston: McGraw Hill.