Max Weber’s Rationalism & the Law

4 April 2015
Examines concepts of rationality, ideal types, legitimate authority, social order, bureaucracy, charisma & applicability to 20th Cent. (Martin Luther King, O.J. Simpson case).

The purpose of this research is to examine Max Weber’s sociological theory of rationality and ideal types and the use of that theory as it applies to Weber’s sociology of law. The plan of the research will be to set forth in general terms Weber’s approach to social theory, and then to see whether and to what extent it is useful in explaining ambiguous social phenomena, particularly those that give rise to questions about the sociology of the legal system. To this end, reference will be made to certain legal ambiguities raised by illustrative cases.

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No discussion of Weber’s theory of the sociology of law would be complete without reference to his social theory in general and his multifaceted treatment of rationality in particular. Indeed, his treatments of society, rationality, and law persistently overlap and converge; Weber’s thought is …

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