Max Weber - A Passionate Thinker (Max Weber - Die Leidenschaft des Denkens, 2005)

Mar 21, 2007

Lecture and Discussion at the Goethe-Institut with author Joachim Radkau and Lawrence Scaff | Convener: Gisela Mettele

Politics as a vocation,’ ‘the protestant ethic’ and ‘charismatic leadership’ are all phrases attributed to Max Weber (1864-1920) which have become common parlance in newspaper editorials. Although he is still little known, Weber exposed the fundamental structures of politics, the economy and society in the modern world. He witnessed firsthand, on the cusp of the twentieth century, how all areas of life were being subordinated to rationalization. This experience provided the theme for his life’s work.

A polymath who wasn’t cowed by apparent boundaries between subjects, he researched how humankind had distanced itself from nature, placing the systems of politics and the economy in its place.

Joachim Radkau's work, the first comprehensive biography of Max Weber, deals in detail with Weber's personal life and his work. Widely discussed and debated in Germany today, the biography brings Max Weber’s life, works and era together to create a lively panorama of a time whose changes are still felt today. Radkau is professor for modern history at the University of Bielefeld. He is an author of numerous books, including The Age of Unrest (1998).

In cooperation with the German Historical Institute, Washington DC.