For this important selection from Weber, sections of text from Weber's major works (Gesammelte, Aufsatze Zur Religionssoziologie, including The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism; General Economic History; and The Agrarian Sociology of Ancient Civilisations) have been carefully edited and substantially translated to form a coherent and integrated volume.

Professor Andreski's aim has been to use Weber's own works to explain crucial turns in the evolution of societies and cultures, while eliminating the difficulties of language and frequent mistranslation which have previously made Weber so difficult and baffling for students new to his work.

An essay by Andreski introduces the selections, which are centred on Weber's principal interest, the relationship between capitalism, religion and bureaucracy. He seeks to correct those misinterpretations of Weber's work which have stressed his classification, rather than his attempts to theorise and explain social phenomena on the basis of a comparitive analysis of universal historical trends.

This book was first published in 1983.

Introduction by Stanislav Andreski The Writings of Max Weber A Note on the Sources The Texts 1. The Uniqueness of Western Civilization 2. The Failure of Capitalism in the Ancient World 3. The Confucianist Bureaucracy and the Germs of Capitalism in China: the City and the Guild 4. Hindu Religion, Caste and Bureaucratic Despotism as Factors of Economic Stagnation: the Caste and the Tribe 5. The Nature of Modern Capitalism 6. Protestantism and the Spirit of Capitalism 7. Religion and Other Factors in the Development of Modern Capitalism8. The Distinctive Features of European Cities and the Rise of the West 9. The State and Business Enterprise 10. The End of Capitalism?