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Showing posts from October, 2018

Weber on Stratification

It is commonly held that Weber identified three dimensions of stratification: class, status, and party. This has long been the standard view and has been repeated countless times. It is not, in fact, what Weber said, or even what he implied. I have tried to counter this interpretation before, but here goes again.

Weber’s explicit remarks on power were left unfinished when he died and were published only posthumously as distinct fragments on power and stratification that are now most familiar as parts of the text known, in its English translation, as Economy and Society. In these fragments, Weber discussed the conceptualisation of power in relation to issues of social stratification through ‘class’ (Klasse) and ‘status’(Stände), seeing these social phenomena as being closely associated with each other. His earliest and longest set of notes on the distribution of power, most probably written between 1910 and 1914, first appeared in an English language translation with the title ‘The Dist…