Max Weber has indicated about the social changes in his writings. He considered the changes in the modern societies, and after noting the changes he became motivated to write these changes. Weber emphasized that the modern societies are distinguished by a rationalization process, which indicates that the modern world is largely controlled and managed by rationality where traditional forms of action are substituted by the dominating rational forms. However, it paves the way to word-weariness that is seen as the secularization comprising of the removal of non-rational factors from all areas of life. Further, Weber was worried that the process of rationalization would eliminate the humanity and affection in the social life, which are the most important things for giving meaning to the existence of human life.
Moreover, Weber has mentioned in his writings that in the modern society, bureaucracy has become a dominant and a significant factor in the social organizations (Edles and Appelrouth). The existence of bureaucratic organizations is necessary in order to ensure smooth functioning and effectual conduction of operations in the industrial societies. Without bureaucracy, it is not possible to accomplish the task in an effective manner. The bureaucratic organizations enjoy technical supremacy over other types of organizations.
He has indicated that the bureaucracy is increasing due to the development of several new types of power in the industrial societies, as a result of which some people exercise more power as compared to other people. People are forced to comply with the desires and wishes of authoritative individuals irrespective of the fact that they agree with their opinion or not. It is because an individual or an organization enjoys a right and power to command the obedience. People living in society strive for power in order to get social honor, and social status. However, social status is the distribution of social honor in the community among different groups. The sociological status of the party, however, vary in accordance with the social action that it struggles for exerting influences, which depend on the whether or not the society is stratified in terms of classes and statuses.
Weber explained that today Capitalism has dominated the life specifically the economic life of individuals, and it is selecting the objects via the process of survival of fittest object (Edles and Appelrouth). Weber also described that Protestant ethic is not responsible for causing capitalism instead it provides essential economic as well as the moral climate for facilitating capitalism. Capitalism and the industrial revolution are effective enough to bring immense change. Keeping this into consideration, Weber has used this for making a connection between social change and the religious ideas. Capitalism has provided the facility of recruiting the labors easily.
Furthermore, Weber also focused on legitimacy, which indicates a belief system comprising of justifications to demand obedience, and authority to exercise dominance with others in a right manner. According to Weber, the modern societies are ruled with the help of rational legal authority (Edles and Appelrouth). Weber also considered the changes that were taking place in the society via the charismatic leader efforts. Because of the fact that rationalization helps in bringing bureaucratization, and the bureaucracy is effective in bringing ossification, the rationalization process is not enough for the ongoing process of the social change. For this reason, charismatic leadership is required for the social change. The charismatic leaders are a powerful force that paves the way to social change. Other ideal legitimate dominations that Weber explained are traditional authority, legal or rational authority.
Edles, Laura Desfor, and Scott Appelrouth. Sociological Theory in Classical Era. Thousand Oak, California: Pine Forge, 2005.