MAX WEBER - York University

MAX WEBER - York University

Authority Bureaucracy They (Jesus, a professor or a scientists, a Queen or King, slave traders) are leaders in the sense that they issue

commands and others follow their commands. Only in the extreme case of slavery

there is no free compliance. (Power) Commands are obeyed by a certain group out of voluntary compliance. (Authority) voluntary compliance implies that

people obey because they have some sort of interest in obedience. 1. 2. material interest (salary, economic

status, etc.) custom These two factors (material Interests and Custom), do not, even taken together, form a sufficiently reliable

basis for a social order. This is the additional and decisive factor

people find the given commands (laws, policies) to be valid. they constitute the basis of action for its own sake (not for self interest or other consequences).

Based on their validity: 1. Traditional 2. Legal-Rational 3. Charismatic

For example the Queen was the supreme authority in both England and Canada belief in the sanctity of traditions Basis of the legitimacy of traditional authority.

Designated according to traditionally transmitted rules (such as kings and queens designated according to the royal kinship).

The personal authority of the individual What is obeyed is the person in authority

subjects follow the person in the authority status The traditional laws The legitimate grounds of authority Belief in the traditional Laws and values (sacred)

The person in authority is obeyed For example: the authority of the Prime

Minister in Canada or of the professors at the university. They are elected or appointed on the basis of the legally established rules. a belief in the 'legality' of enacted rules

enacted through rational discussion and deliberation and thus subject to change

Consistent and logical (not contradictory and conflicting laws) Traditional: When parents say because I said so!

They rely on the traditional idea of parental authority parents negotiate the rules with children and let the rules and not merely the parental authority govern

parent-child relationship a consistent system of law rationally enacted

Constitution laws (parliament government, et.) Is subject to an impersonal order (the rule of law where the ruler is not

beyond the law) in free countries the law ought to be king; and there ought to be no other.

It is on the basis of these rules or procedures that those elevated to authority attain the right to issue commands. a member of the group Equal Status

(Citizens and not subjects, disciples or follower.) owe the obedience not to the person in authority as an individual, but to the impersonal order.

The legally Established Laws The legally elected or appointed authority The Right to issue

Commands (laws) People belief in the legality of the laws The laws are followed not the person

For example: the historical figures such as Gandhi, Lenin, Khomeini, or famous actors, singers etc. Their followers believed they had exceptional and extraordinary qualities and thus obey the orders given by them.

The commands and orders are obeyed Devotion to the charismatic Leader (emotional)

Belief in the exceptional and extraordinary qualities of the leader (charisma) The purest type of exercise of legal rational authority

Domination on the basis of technical qualifications and the greatest possible length of technical training.

without hatred or passion, and hence without affection or enthusiasm and without purely personal, irrational, and emotional elements which escape calculation.

depends on its impersonality.: Because it eliminates the essential aspects of humanity, bureaucracy is dehumanizing .

Bureaucracy is the most efficient form of organizing the public affairs. The management of the modern office

is based upon written documents ('the files'). Impersonal: independent of the persons working in the office (e.g. independent of personal oral communication in issuing policies, plans, etc.) The expansion of Bureaucratization was

linked to the following four factors: Into new areas of welfare provision and economic regulation The growing employment of clerical, technical and managerial personnel within the capitalist enterprises

1. 2. Bureaucracy creates conflicting tendencies by promoting and at the

same time restricting: Individual freedom Democracy Promotes personal freedom People are freed from:

a) the old forms of personal relations and ties of loyalty (kinship, gender, race) b) property and other external considerations (the class)

Restricts individual freedom 1. The size of organizations beyond the reach of individual. 2. Eliminates individuals chance to act out of

their conviction and Passion Promotes Democracy Breaking down traditional privilege and patrimonial domination (as explained above).

Restricts Democracy due to the power of experts (the appointed bureaucrats) to obstruct the power of the head of the bureaucracy (i.e. the democratically elected

prime ministers, premiers, et.) Todays Ideal entrepreneur entrepreneur or or political leader political leader

the innovative, risk Follow the logic of taking who acts with possible means over passion and the assertion of conviction. ends

Because of its: 1. ability to coordinate action over a large area, 2. continuity of operation, 3. monopoly of expertise and control of the files, 4. internal social cohesion and morale.

The Marxist belief that the overthrow of capitalism would inaugurate the classless society

This is caused by: 1. The state ownership of the means of production and Planned Economy 2. The extension of equal citizenship citizens in socialist systems expect the government to provide employment,

health care, education, housing, etc. The countervailing power structures that existed within capitalist society, in particular that of private capitalism itself, would be removed.

Webers prediction that the revolution had thrown up a new bureaucratic ruling class, coordinated and disciplined by the institution of the Communist Party soon became a


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