by reestheskin on 05/06/2020

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Two quotes from an article on Max Weber caught my attention. They are both from his book The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism (which I have not read).

In the closing lines of The Protestant Ethic, Weber described the typical capitalists of his own time as mediocrities much like the stunted creatures that Nietzsche had called “the last men.” A world populated by such soulless beings ran not on individual initiative but on the imperatives of the system: “Today,” Weber wrote,

this mighty cosmos determines, with overwhelming coercion, the style of life not only of those directly involved in business but of every individual who is born into this mechanism, and may well continue to do so until the day when the last ton of fossil fuel has been consumed. [emphasis added]

Peter Gordon adds, ‘Those final lines were prescient.’

Max the Fatalist | by Peter E. Gordon | The New York Review of Books