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Preliminary Exam Summary; Section: Organizations By Eileen Bevis CITATION: Weber, Max. Economy and Society.

Edited Guenther Roth and Claus Wittich. New York: Bedminister Press, 1968, vol. 1, Conceptual Exposition, pgs. 956-1005, “Bureaucracy”. ABSTRACT: The chapter on “Bureaucracy” is in vol. 3 of E&S, along with six other chapters on various types of domination, legitimacy, and authority. What you should know, context-wise: bureaucracy is the typical expression of rationally regulated association within a structure of domination. 1 This chapter is a schematic outline of the structural characteristics, origins (= necessary conditions), and effects of bureaucracy. Fully-developed bureaucracies are impersonal, “objective,” indestructible, indispensable, born out of inherent technical superiority, cause social leveling, and boost rationalism [among MANY other things]. SUMMARY: I. Characteristics of a Modern Bureaucracy, a.k.a. Modern “Officialdom” (956-958) A. Jurisdictional areas are generally ordered by rules = laws = administrative regulations (956). 1. Regular activities required by the bureaucracy are assigned as official duties. 2. The authority to command the discharge of these duties is distributed in a stable way and is delimited by rules concerning acceptable coercive means. 3. The regular and continuous fulfillment of these duties is provided for in a methodical way. These three elements constitute: - a bureaucratic agency in the sphere of the state - a bureaucratic enterprise in the sphere of the private economy Bureaucracy is fully developed only in modern state or modern economy = capitalism. B. There is a clearly established office hierarchy system of super- and sub-ordination in which there is a supervision of lower offices by higher ones and regulated channels of appeal (957). The fully developed bureaucracy is “monocratically organized” [ruled by a single person, such as a Prime Minister]. Ideally, the higher authority never takes over the lower authority’s business [bureaucracy would then ‘shrink’]; instead, lower authority’s offices will always be filled in the case of a vacancy [bureaucracy thus always and only grows larger]. C. Management is based on written documents and a staff of subaltern officials and scribes. The officials plus their “files” and materials make up a bureau. In principle, official bureau activity is kept separate from private home life [for relevance of this point, think $$] (957).
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The others: traditionally prescribed social action is typically represented by patriarchalism; charismatic structure of domination rests upon individual authority which is based neither upon rational rules nor upon tradition (954)

Fully democratic elections of administrative chiefs and their subordinate officials usually endangers supervision of officials and precise functioning of the bureaucracy (961). . B. and this salary is based on rank/status and maybe length of service. However. and learnable (958). True because there is a required. exhaustive. Elected officials hold autonomous positions vis-à-vis their supervisors. Also true because position of the official is seen as a “duty”—official doesn’t own position. has special exams b. prescribed course of training and exams which takes up full working capacity for a long time. e. The modern official always strives for and usually attains a distinctly elevated social esteem vis-a-vis the governed. and higher salary) (963). F. Management of the office follows general rules. The Social Position of the Official a. not in U. socially-inept. Chin post-Shi Hwangti until present) (963-64). One definition of word that Weber uses frequently: prebends and prebendal organization refer to all cases of life-long assignment to officials of rent payments deriving from material goods or land/rent. Officials have highest social position where there is demand for expert administration and there is a strong hold of status conventions/social differentiation (e. Monetary and Financial Presuppositions of Bureaucracy (963-969) A. The measure of ‘independence’ legally guaranteed by ‘tenure for life’ is not always a source of increased social status (e. though historically there were large. The development of the money economy is a presupposition of a modern bureaucracy [difficult to pay officials with “in kind” payments after a certain point]. b.S. Various asides on how to turn ‘in kind’ payments into cash via one’s official position. why direct purchase of offices occurs (need not just cash but capital). Official activity demands full working capacity of the official in a fully developed bureaucracy (958). which are pretty stable.2 D.g. The official is set for a “career” up the hierarchy of the bureaucracy (up to higher officers. Bureaucratic officials earn a salary. II. later Roman Principate. Appointed officials function more accurately than elected officials because they’re been selected for functional ability. B. well-developed bureaucracies that used in kind payments (Egypt’s New Kingdom. but rather agrees to fulfill “impersonal and functional purposes” of office in exchange for secure guarantee of existence. Office Holding as a Vocation a. III. not a wage. E. independent judges vs. use of unqualified elected or appointed-by-elected officials usually backfires on party [except in Chicago??].) (959-60). c. Office management usually presupposes thorough. socially-ept and/because socially dependent because removable military officers in Germany) (962). d. Knowledge of these rules constitutes special technical expertise.g.Weber . more important status. Roman Catholic Church. They are also guaranteed a pension (963). not on hours worked. The position of the official within and outside of the bureaucracy (958-963) A. specialized training (958). in compensation fro the fulfillment of real or fictitious duties of office (966-67).

or further of political rights. so while not necessary. The Quantitative Development of Administrative Tasks (969-971) A. Intensity: the assumption by the bureaucracy of as many tasks as possible for continuous management and discharge in its own establishment (972). and more recently. power politics. The second basis of bureaucratization. “The decisive reason for the advance of bureaucratic organization has always been its purely technical superiority over any other form of organization” (that would be collegiate. In politics. discretion. Full taxation system presupposes money economy. B. career track are superior to arbitrary.g. E. the greater such dependence (971). especially hierarchical authority (967). is also the more significant (971). the qualitative and intensive increase of administrative tasks. . B. reduction of friction and of material and personal costs (973). The first basis of bureaucratization is the quantitative and extensive increase of administrative tasks [the second? qualitative…just wait!] (969). V. The creation of standing armies. Bureaucracy is definitely tied to the availability of continuous revenues to maintain it. Bureaucracy has optimized precision. physical coercion (e. D. Economic: Increasing possession of consumer goods and of a sophisticated technique of fashioning external life affects the standard of living and increases subjective sense of indispensability of provision for wants that were previously unknown (972). speed. the big state and the mass party are the classic fields of such development (969). unambiguity. In particular. land rents. or taxation (968). and prerequisite money economy are certainly helpful and conducive to bureaucratization (968). its resulting administrative requirements.3 C. to officials weakens the bureaucratic mechanism. enslavement) for the success and maintenance of a rigorous mechanization of the bureaucratic apparatus (967-68). strict subordination. the large modern state is technically dependent upon a bureaucratic basis—the larger and more powerful the state. The Technical Superiority of Bureaucratic Organization over Administration by Notables (973-980) A. C. unity. honorific. taxation system. E. VI. developing public finances. (Also. spur direct growth of state administration because can only be managed publicly and spur indirect growth because contribute to development of inter-local goods traffic and to tempo of administrative reactions (973.Weber . 974). and avocational forms) (973) [contrast with Meyer and Rowan]. knowledge of the files. Political: increasing demands for order and protection (police) exerts influence toward bureaucratization (972). Qualitative Changes of Administrative Tasks (971-973) A. continuity. Status incentives and an assured salary. IV. the complexity of civilization have all historically contributed to the development of bureaucracy (972).) D. Technical: modern means of communication. Such revenues come either from private profits. This bestowal of material endowments (aside from salaries). economic ultimately determine cultural influences toward bureaucracy.

The Concentration of the Means of Administration (980-983) The bureaucratic structure goes hand in hand with the concentration of resources. For instance as with modern mass democracy (because of characteristic democratic principle of abstract regularity of the exercise of authority. this mass democratic state. and standing—either national or private (mercenary) (981). armies were able to become larger. empirical justice. a bureaucracy puts its entire administrative expense on the budget and provides the lower authorities with the current means of expenditure. though they aren’t advocating return to Kadi justice but rather rational law where “objective” standard of “reasons of state” stands behind every administrative act (979). in combination with democratic currents.k. Differences in the development of substantive law in Germany and England rest not on economic but on political factors—structures of domination (976). VII.Weber . which is a result of the demand for ‘equality before the law’ and horror of ‘privilege’ and doing business ‘case by case’ (983). professional. B. doesn’t always turn out substantively for the democratic good and minimize domination (979-80). Bureaucracy also offers unparalleled objectivity (discharge according to calculable rules and without regard for person) in the carrying out of administrative functions (975). The Levelling of Social Differences (983-987) Although bureaucracy has “indubitable technical superiority. Kadi justice consists of “informal judgments rendered in terms of concrete ethical or other practical valuations”. With complexity. Historically. VIII. Only Roman law consists of formal judgment rendered by subsumption under rational concepts or ‘rules of decision’ (976). A. and objectivity come calls for a detached “expert” (975). this “dehumanization” increases as bureaucracy develops (975). specialization. btw (984). Just because ‘expertness’ is valued doesn’t mean general and abstract norms rule (978). Such raison d’état is fused inseparably with instincts of bureaucracy for maintaining own power (979). D. The leveling of social and economic differences contribute to bureaucratization. the material means of management in the hands of the master (980. a.a. b. With bureaucracy. Similarly. the use of which upper management regulates and controls (982-83). Helping and hindering influences to bureaucratization include: A. including state and university. 982).. consists of formal judgments rendered by drawing on analogies and depending on and interpreting concrete precedents (976). C. in other spheres. a. Everybody is attacking the idea of such a ‘law without gaps’ where there is no room for the creative discretion of the official. it took bureaucratization of the polity to really rationalize Roman law into a closed system of concepts to be handled scientifically (978). Aside on Kadi Justice and Common Law compared to Roman Law. .” its growth hasn’t been smooth. Although technical factors of trial procedure contributed to development of rational law. E. Note also that rational law. or common law. the bureaucratization of the army has everywhere occurred as army service shifted from the propertied to the property-less (happens as culture and economy develop and propertied men get too busy and unfit for war).4 B. Necessitates paid staff.

rationally organized and directed action is superior to every kind of collective behavior and also social action opposing it. foreign affairs) (986). Because bureaucracies are indispensable and impersonal. he cannot start or stop anything. Where older structural forms were already highly technically developed. whereas bureaucracy likes closed groups of status officials that aren’t universally accessible and the authority of officialdom against public opinion (985). more and more impossible (989). “crypto-plutocratic distribution of power” results (989). bureaucracy is one of the hardest social structures to destroy (987). and an attitude set on habitual virtuosity in the mastery of single yet methodically integrated functions” (988). In the great majority of cases he is only a small cog in a ceaselessly moving mechanism which ascribes to him an essentially fixed route of march” (988). C. XI. a functional specialization of work. their direction depends on presence of other factors. bureaucracy was slower to develop because technically superior impetus was weaker (987). for examples of where it happened see 985-86 [only useable if you’re already familiar with those examples b/c no detail given]. the resulting system of domination is practically indestructible” (987). The individual bureaucrat is “chained to his activity in his entire economic and ideological existence. E.Weber . The ruled cannot dispense with the bureaucratic apparatus once it exists.g. however. The social effects. They cannot replace it easily because it “rests on expert training. X. “Democracy” as such is opposed to the “rule” of bureaucracy (991). D.5 B. are leveling (990). Motives behind such passive democratization are economic (e. for stopping it results in chaos (and the masses depend especially on the bureaucratic organizations of private capitalism for their material fate) (988). Unless he is at the very top.” in the sense of the forceful creation of entirely new formations of authority. The economic effects of bureaucracy are varied. By “passive democratization” Weber means a leveling of the governed. it is in everybody’s best interest to keep the thing running—making “revolution.g. The Power Position of the Bureaucracy . economicallydetermined origin of new classes) and/or political (e. But democracy also inevitably comes into conflict with bureaucratic tendencies that were produced by democracy’s fights against nobles—democracy strives to shorten office terms and to have more candidate choices than only those with special expert qualifications. they are very easy to steer once one has gained control over them—even if the enemy takes over. IX. The Objective and Subjective Bases of Bureaucratic Perpetuity (987-989) Once fully established. though very often. The Indeterminate Economic Consequences of Bureaucratization (989-990) The consequences of bureaucracy depend upon the direction which the powers using the apparatus give to it. Bureaucracy is the means of transforming social action into rationally organized action and thus is a “power instrument of the first order for one who controls the bureaucratic apparatus” (987)…Still asking why bureaucracy has so much power? Because “under otherwise equal conditions. Where administration has been completely bureaucratized.

and ‘private‘ law which regulates the relationships of the governed individuals among themselves” (998). unlike bureaucratic experts. from the point of view of the ruler’s interests. “Only with the bureaucratization of the state and of law in general can one see a definite possibility of a sharp conceptual separation of an ‘objective’ legal order from the ‘subjective’ rights of the individual which is guarantees. [Note: presupposes distinction between state/office authority and personal authority (998).. is on the nature of education and personal culture a. B. Bureaucracy and Education A. emerge on the basis of rational specialization of functions and the rule of expert knowledge.] XIII. furthering the development of ‘rational matter-of-factness’ and the personality type of the professional expert (998). One of the important effects of A. under normal conditions “overtowering” because bureaucracy’s political “masters” face it as dilettantes to an expert (991). they must be distinguished from” (1) advisory bodies selected from among private and interested circles. the power position of a fully developed bureaucracy is always great. “Collegiate administration disappears when. However. who represents the concentration of the power of the central bureaucracy in a single pair of hands in a constitutional government and who sees everything and controls what monarch sees (993). Only private economic interest groups in business know more than bureaucracies. whether out of functional or pure power motives (992-93). Bureaucracy promotes a ‘rationalist’ way of life. The ruler gains needed expert knowledge and yet plays the experts off each other so they don’t gain power to prompt him into ill-advised decisions (995). because these groups have an added incentive for exact knowledge— economic survival (994). On the other hand. which are frequently found in the modern state and whose nucleus is not formed of officials or of former officials and (2) boards of directors as in joint stock corporations (996). Bureaucracies are naturally secretive about their knowledge and intentions. C. Excursus on Collegiate Bodies and Interest Groups Rulers seeking to fend off domination of experts will sometimes turn to formation of “collegiate bodies” that deliberate and resolve continuously (rather than occasionally) and that are clearly under rulers’ authority [i. Being functionally indispensable does not necessarily translate into lots of power for bureaucracy.e. as a type. ruler doesn’t have to listen to them]. The absolute monarch is powerless in the face of the superior knowledge of the bureaucratic expert. B. which regulates the relationships of the public agencies among each other and with the subjects. including the face of the prime minister. as well as that of the further distinction between ‘public’ law. “Collegiate bodies.Weber . the system of rational ‘examination for expertise’ is brought to the fore with modern bureaucracy (999) . a strictly unified administrative leadership appears to be more important than thoroughness in the preparation of administrative decisions” (997). XII. Spread from central to varied lower authorities (997).6 A.

Weber . demands for the introduction of regulated curricula leading to special exams have much more to do with limiting supply of qualified candidates than with belief in education (1000). Since bureaucracy has a ‘rational’ character. the “specialist” rules (1001). such examination systems conflict with democratic fears of a privileged ‘caste’ (here. its rise and expansion has everywhere had ‘revolutionary’ results. with rules. C. in a special sense still to be discussed. the more typical is the absence of bureaucracy and of officialdom in general. prestige which can be turned into economic advantage (1000) d. Such acts lead to formation and perpetuation of a privileged stratum in business offices and public service (1000-01). of experts) (999) c. this development is greatly helped by the social prestige of educational degrees/patents acquired through such specialized exams. and matter-of-factness predominating. means-ends calculus. XIV. Conclusion “The bureaucratic structure is everywhere a late product of historical development. RELEVANCE: . The “cultivated man” was the old ideal. in modern bureaucracies.7 b. as had the advance of rationalism in general” (1002). The further back we trace our steps.