Conceptual Foundations of Weber's Theory of Domination 
Conceptual Foundations of Weber's Theory of Domination
by Yale / Ivan Szelenyi
Video Lecture 17 of 25
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Date Added: June 30, 2011

Lecture Description

Diverging significantly from Marx's idea that history can be traced by the modes of production and the economy, Weber argues that history is characterized by different modes of authority. Leaders strive to rule in authoritative ways, they attempt to legitimate their uses of power. Weber argues that throughout history, leaders have successfully established domination in three modes of authority: traditional, charismatic, and legal-rational.

Reading assignment:
Weber, Economy and Society
- Chapter 10, pp. 941-955
- Chapter 1, "Types of Social Action"; "Types of Action Orientation"; "Legitimate Order"; "Types of Legitimate Order"; "Bases of Legitimacy"; "Power and Domination," pp. 24-54

Course Index

Course Description

This course provides an overview of major works of social thought from the beginning of the modern era through the 1920s. Attention is paid to social and intellectual contexts, conceptual frameworks and methods, and contributions to contemporary social analysis. Writers include Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Montesquieu, Adam Smith, Marx, Weber, and Durkheim.

Course Structure:
This Yale College course, taught on campus twice per week for 50 minutes, was recorded for Open Yale Courses in Fall 2009.


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