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Marx and Weber: The origins of capitalism

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  1. Introduction
  2. The need for coordination of actions
  3. The need for coordinated decisions
  4. The need for coordination among various resources
  5. Bibliography
  6. Conclusion

The realm of social theory is not an easy one to tackle, as it requires one to have significant knowledge of ideas of the past, and the events that helped shape the circumstances that these historical ideas were developed in. For example, when studying contemporary social systems, one must have an understanding of not only Karl Marx's ideas, but the circumstances of his time as they would have shaped his thoughts in some way. Studying social theory is a multi-disciplinary endeavor that encompasses philosophy, politics, economics, and especially sociology, and knowledge of all of these fields of important to fully understand how social theory operates and affects our lives. (Smith, 1998: vii). Two prominent social theorists whose work has contemporary relevance are Karl Marx and Max Weber.

[...] (1998). Marx: Society as Second Nature. In Smith, M. G. (ed.). Early Modern Social Theory Selected Interpretive Readings. Toronto, ON: Canadian Scholars' Press Inc. Heilbroner, R. (1992). Twenty-First Century Capatalism. Toronto, ON: House of Anansi Press. Hertzberg, H. (2008). LIKE, SOCIALISM :Comment. The New Yorker, November, 84(35) Retrieved November from Research Library database. Niehans, J. (1990). A History of Economic Theory Classic Contributions 1720 1980. Baltimore, ML: The John Hopkins University Press. Parsons, T. (1947). Weber's ?Economic Sociology'. In [...]


[...] In this essay we compared the thought of these two significant theorists by examining how they believe capitalism originated, and whether either of them would agree that Obama is indeed a socialist/Marxist. From this it is clear that Marx and Weber arrive at their theories of capitalism in different ways, but when they are applied to contemporary examples, like that of Obama's policies, they can both be used to question whether socialism/Marxism exist in our contemporary society, they result with the answer of a resounding no. Bibliography Frisby, D. & Sayer, D. [...]

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