This book is an introduction to Max Weber’s ambitious comparative study of the sociological and institutional foundations of the modern economic and social order. In this work originally published in German in 1920, Weber discusses the analytical methods of sociology and, at the same time, presents a devastating critique of prevailing sociological theory and of its universalist, determinist underpinnings. None of Weber’s other writings offers the reader such a grasp of his theories; none displays so clearly his erudition, the scope of his interests, and his analytical powers.
Economic sociologist and Weber scholar Richard Swedberg has, in this volume, selected essays from Weber's enormous body of writings on the subject of economic sociology. The central themes of the anthology are modern capitalism and its relationships to politics, law, culture and religion.