How does Weber characterize economic traditionalism or the traditionalist economic ethic? Give examples.

  1. At the beginning of Chapter II of PESC, pp. 8-11, Weber describes the spirit of capitalism. How does he illustrate this state of mind? What are the main characteristics of this spirit of modern capitalism? Summarize the main points he makes as clearly as you can. Give examples.
  2. Weber then goes on to discuss the mental state that this capitalist spirit had to struggle against historically (esp. on pp. 14-18). How does Weber characterize economic traditionalism or the traditionalist economic ethic? Give examples.
  3. Following this to the end of the chapter, he discusses the spirit of capitalism as an rationalistic economic ethic. How has economic rationalism transformed Western societies? What are some examples of economic rationalism or rationalization?

Extra Credit: On pages 13-14 and 21-22, Weber discusses the relationship between economics and ideas, frames of mind, motivations, etc. What does he say about the relation of economics and social ideas? What view does he address here? How does he argue against it?

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