Karl Marx, Emile Durkheim And Max Weber Essay

1198 Words Dec 10th, 2015 5 Pages
Karl Marx, Emile Durkheim and Max Weber are three fundamental figureheads in the foundation of sociology who asserted that our lifestyles are products of the society in which we live. They all lived in a period of great social change, that of the Industrial Revolution, and based their writings and musings upon what they observed happening around them and extrapolated as to the condition of the future. One foundational product of contemporary societies, that truly came into existence at the time during which they were writing, would be the economy and economic life. Looking at it on a macro level perspective, it is one of the aspects of the social superstructure. It is a social institution by itself, but it also shares a give and take relationship with other institutions in society and the superstructure such as education, ethics, law, religion, etc. However, the exact dynamics of the relationship between society and the economy are up to theoretical debate. Marx, Durkheim, and Weber were the first to explore these relationships, being around during the time in which they formed, in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. All three developed differing viewpoints based on their respective positions and backgrounds. Marx viewed the economy as the substructure to the superstructure; the base that shapes the rest of the social institutions. Durkheim regarded the economy as only one of many institutions that create a society. Last but not least, Weber thought of the economy…

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