Max Weber

By: Layney Steging

Max Weber was born in Erfurt, Prussia which is now know known as Germany. He was born on April 21, 1864 and died June 14, 1920. He was the son of wealthy parents (upperclass), Max and Helene Weber. His father was a liberal politician and his mother was raised in a Calvinist orthodoxy. Later in his life, he left home and started his schooling at the University of Heidelberg in 1882. Two years later, he enrolled in the Strassberg military service. After leaving the military he was asked by his father to finish his education at the University of Berlin and started his career as a professor at Berlin as well.


Max Weber invented the term "Ideal Type" which is a description comprised of the essential characteristics of a feature of society. Which essentially is the "measuring stick" or what we are comparing everything else to. He also use the principle of Verstehen in his attempts to persuade other sociologists to go deeper than just what's on the surface and try to see more into others thoughts and feelings. The Principle of Verstehen is understanding individuals thought process behind their actions. His work sparked the inspiration to develop an interactionist perspective in sociology. His most famous/important works were the books "The Protestant Ethic" and the "Spirit of capitalism" (1905) and also Economy and Society (1922).
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