Protestantism Vs Protestantism

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In his most famous publication, Weber studies the relationship between the ethics of ascetic Protestantism and the emergence of contemporary capitalism. He accounts bureaucracy as a key feature in modern society. This is in no way a detailed account of Protestantism itself but instead an introduction to his later studies such as “The Religion of China: Confucianism and Taoism” or “The Religion of India: The Sociology of Hinduism and Buddhism”. Weber argues that the “spirit” that defines capitalist ideas originates in the Protestant Reformation. The Reformation largely influences his work and he noted the shift in Europe’s economic centre following this, away from Catholic countries, for example France, towards protestant countries, for…show more content…
He notes a large correlation with being a Protestant and having an involvement in business. This can be seen across all nationalities. It indicated that Protestants were among the wealthiest in society and pursued wealthy ventures. "Business leaders and owners of capital, as well as the skilled higher strata of the labour force and especially the higher technical or commercially trained staff of modern enterprises tend to be predominantly Protestant." (Weber, 1958). Protestantism offers the concept of a worldly “calling” and also gives worldly activity a religious character. This implies to pursue profit but does not explain the need to. Weber argues that the spirit of modern capitalism views profit as an end in itself and pursuing profit as being noble and pure. He sees Calvinism as being the main source in explaining his…show more content…
Spending their wealth on luxurious items was seen to be disrespectful to God and as a result people expected to pour their earnings into their callings. This has close ties with the capitalist ethic. From this ethic, according to Weber, a system of capitalism emerged that no longer required ascetic values to sustain itself. These became the capitalist spirit. Working hard and worshiping, activities held in high regards by Protestants contributed to what we seen in contemporary society as being the capitalist ethic. Following the reformation, the emergence of a new kind of economy, one focused on hard work and profit emerged. Weber recounts his theories of why this is so and presents them to us within this five chapter book. Religion was a positive catalyst for economic expansion and drove progress within business and worldly activity. European economies prospered following the Reformation and it began a new period of economic dynamism and religious
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