Writing Out Loud: Basic Sociological Terms

Weber is well-known for his work on power and legitimacy. In “Types of Legitimate Domination,” Weber gives us three types of legitimate domination. Answer the following questions after completing the reading.

Theme: Networks of Capital


  1. One of Weber’s key concepts is that of verstehen, which he describes in the beginning of the essay. Use the concept of verstehen to describe what Weber means when he says sociology is the “interpretive understanding” of social action.
  2. What does it take for action to be social, according to Weber?
  3. Weber gives us four ideal-types of social action. In your own words, define each ideal-type of social action and give a hypothetical example of each.
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