Introduction

Reiner Grundmann, Nico Stehr

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

Werner Sombart (1863-1941) was a famous and controversial social scientist in Germany during the early 20th century. Highly influential, his work and reputation have been indelibly tainted by his embrace of National Socialism in the last decade of his life. Although Sombart left an enormous opus spanning disciplinary boundaries, the scholarly assessment of and intellectual reaction to his work inside and outside of Germany is divided, and ambivalent. Best known for his analyses of capitalism - his essay "Why is There No Socialism in the United States?" remains a classic - Sombart consistently responded to the social and political developments that have shaped the 20th century. This collection provides a representative sampling of those portions of Sombart's work that have stood the test of time. The volume opens with a substantial introduction by the editors reviewing Sombart's life and career, the evolution of his major intellectual concerns, his relation to Marx and Weber, and his political affiliation with the Nazis. Their selection of texts emphasizes areas of his economic and cultural thought that remain relevant to intellectual trends in the social sciences, particularly those trends that seek a more broadly based, cross-disciplinary approach to the relationship of culture and economics. Sombart's writings on capitalism are represented by essays on the nature and origin of the market system and the diversity of its actors and motives among the bourgeoisie and the proletariat. Also included is an excerpt from Sombart's controversial volume "The Jews and Modern Capitalism" exploring the widely perceived relation between economic life and Judaism as a religion. In essays on the economics of cultural processes, Sombart's comprehensive and expansive idea of cultural science yields remarkable and prophetic insights into the nature of urbanism, luxury consumption, fashion and the cultural secularization of love. The volume's final section consists of Sombart's reflections on the social influences of technology, the economic life of the future, and on socialism, including the influential essay "Why is There No Socialism in the United States?". Encapsulating the most valuable aspects of his work, this study provides clear demonstration of Sombart's sense for fine cultural distinctions and broad cultural developments and the predictive power of his analyses. It should be of interest to sociologists, economists, political scientists and specialists in cultural studies.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEconomic Life in the Modern Age: Werner Sombart
EditorsReiner Grundmann, Nico Stehr
Place of PublicationPiscataway (US)
PublisherTransaction
Pagesix-lxii
ISBN (Print)9780765800305
Publication statusPublished - 31 May 2001

Fingerprint

Sombart
Economics
Socialism
Capitalism
Germany
Disciplinary Boundaries
Cross-disciplinary
Secularization
Social Sciences
Cultural Development
Judaism
Sociologists
National Socialism
Religion
Bourgeoisie
Jews
Urbanism
Proletariat
Thought
Opus

Keywords

  • Werner Sombart
  • social scientist
  • Germany
  • National Socialism
  • capitalism
  • Marx
  • Weber
  • Nazis
  • urbanism
  • luxury consumption
  • fashion
  • cultural secularization
  • love

Cite this

Grundmann, R., & Stehr, N. (2001). Introduction. In R. Grundmann, & N. Stehr (Eds.), Economic Life in the Modern Age: Werner Sombart (pp. ix-lxii). Piscataway (US): Transaction.
Grundmann, Reiner ; Stehr, Nico. / Introduction. Economic Life in the Modern Age: Werner Sombart. editor / Reiner Grundmann ; Nico Stehr. Piscataway (US) : Transaction, 2001. pp. ix-lxii
@inbook{da2a03e2615c4eddbdeeb0730fa0fc40,
title = "Introduction",
abstract = "Werner Sombart (1863-1941) was a famous and controversial social scientist in Germany during the early 20th century. Highly influential, his work and reputation have been indelibly tainted by his embrace of National Socialism in the last decade of his life. Although Sombart left an enormous opus spanning disciplinary boundaries, the scholarly assessment of and intellectual reaction to his work inside and outside of Germany is divided, and ambivalent. Best known for his analyses of capitalism - his essay {"}Why is There No Socialism in the United States?{"} remains a classic - Sombart consistently responded to the social and political developments that have shaped the 20th century. This collection provides a representative sampling of those portions of Sombart's work that have stood the test of time. The volume opens with a substantial introduction by the editors reviewing Sombart's life and career, the evolution of his major intellectual concerns, his relation to Marx and Weber, and his political affiliation with the Nazis. Their selection of texts emphasizes areas of his economic and cultural thought that remain relevant to intellectual trends in the social sciences, particularly those trends that seek a more broadly based, cross-disciplinary approach to the relationship of culture and economics. Sombart's writings on capitalism are represented by essays on the nature and origin of the market system and the diversity of its actors and motives among the bourgeoisie and the proletariat. Also included is an excerpt from Sombart's controversial volume {"}The Jews and Modern Capitalism{"} exploring the widely perceived relation between economic life and Judaism as a religion. In essays on the economics of cultural processes, Sombart's comprehensive and expansive idea of cultural science yields remarkable and prophetic insights into the nature of urbanism, luxury consumption, fashion and the cultural secularization of love. The volume's final section consists of Sombart's reflections on the social influences of technology, the economic life of the future, and on socialism, including the influential essay {"}Why is There No Socialism in the United States?{"}. Encapsulating the most valuable aspects of his work, this study provides clear demonstration of Sombart's sense for fine cultural distinctions and broad cultural developments and the predictive power of his analyses. It should be of interest to sociologists, economists, political scientists and specialists in cultural studies.",
keywords = "Werner Sombart, social scientist, Germany, National Socialism, capitalism, Marx, Weber, Nazis, urbanism, luxury consumption, fashion, cultural secularization, love",
author = "Reiner Grundmann and Nico Stehr",
year = "2001",
month = "5",
day = "31",
language = "English",
isbn = "9780765800305",
pages = "ix--lxii",
editor = "Reiner Grundmann and Nico Stehr",
booktitle = "Economic Life in the Modern Age: Werner Sombart",
publisher = "Transaction",

}

Grundmann, R & Stehr, N 2001, Introduction. in R Grundmann & N Stehr (eds), Economic Life in the Modern Age: Werner Sombart. Transaction, Piscataway (US), pp. ix-lxii.

Introduction. / Grundmann, Reiner; Stehr, Nico.

Economic Life in the Modern Age: Werner Sombart. ed. / Reiner Grundmann; Nico Stehr. Piscataway (US) : Transaction, 2001. p. ix-lxii.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

TY - CHAP

T1 - Introduction

AU - Grundmann, Reiner

AU - Stehr, Nico

PY - 2001/5/31

Y1 - 2001/5/31

N2 - Werner Sombart (1863-1941) was a famous and controversial social scientist in Germany during the early 20th century. Highly influential, his work and reputation have been indelibly tainted by his embrace of National Socialism in the last decade of his life. Although Sombart left an enormous opus spanning disciplinary boundaries, the scholarly assessment of and intellectual reaction to his work inside and outside of Germany is divided, and ambivalent. Best known for his analyses of capitalism - his essay "Why is There No Socialism in the United States?" remains a classic - Sombart consistently responded to the social and political developments that have shaped the 20th century. This collection provides a representative sampling of those portions of Sombart's work that have stood the test of time. The volume opens with a substantial introduction by the editors reviewing Sombart's life and career, the evolution of his major intellectual concerns, his relation to Marx and Weber, and his political affiliation with the Nazis. Their selection of texts emphasizes areas of his economic and cultural thought that remain relevant to intellectual trends in the social sciences, particularly those trends that seek a more broadly based, cross-disciplinary approach to the relationship of culture and economics. Sombart's writings on capitalism are represented by essays on the nature and origin of the market system and the diversity of its actors and motives among the bourgeoisie and the proletariat. Also included is an excerpt from Sombart's controversial volume "The Jews and Modern Capitalism" exploring the widely perceived relation between economic life and Judaism as a religion. In essays on the economics of cultural processes, Sombart's comprehensive and expansive idea of cultural science yields remarkable and prophetic insights into the nature of urbanism, luxury consumption, fashion and the cultural secularization of love. The volume's final section consists of Sombart's reflections on the social influences of technology, the economic life of the future, and on socialism, including the influential essay "Why is There No Socialism in the United States?". Encapsulating the most valuable aspects of his work, this study provides clear demonstration of Sombart's sense for fine cultural distinctions and broad cultural developments and the predictive power of his analyses. It should be of interest to sociologists, economists, political scientists and specialists in cultural studies.

AB - Werner Sombart (1863-1941) was a famous and controversial social scientist in Germany during the early 20th century. Highly influential, his work and reputation have been indelibly tainted by his embrace of National Socialism in the last decade of his life. Although Sombart left an enormous opus spanning disciplinary boundaries, the scholarly assessment of and intellectual reaction to his work inside and outside of Germany is divided, and ambivalent. Best known for his analyses of capitalism - his essay "Why is There No Socialism in the United States?" remains a classic - Sombart consistently responded to the social and political developments that have shaped the 20th century. This collection provides a representative sampling of those portions of Sombart's work that have stood the test of time. The volume opens with a substantial introduction by the editors reviewing Sombart's life and career, the evolution of his major intellectual concerns, his relation to Marx and Weber, and his political affiliation with the Nazis. Their selection of texts emphasizes areas of his economic and cultural thought that remain relevant to intellectual trends in the social sciences, particularly those trends that seek a more broadly based, cross-disciplinary approach to the relationship of culture and economics. Sombart's writings on capitalism are represented by essays on the nature and origin of the market system and the diversity of its actors and motives among the bourgeoisie and the proletariat. Also included is an excerpt from Sombart's controversial volume "The Jews and Modern Capitalism" exploring the widely perceived relation between economic life and Judaism as a religion. In essays on the economics of cultural processes, Sombart's comprehensive and expansive idea of cultural science yields remarkable and prophetic insights into the nature of urbanism, luxury consumption, fashion and the cultural secularization of love. The volume's final section consists of Sombart's reflections on the social influences of technology, the economic life of the future, and on socialism, including the influential essay "Why is There No Socialism in the United States?". Encapsulating the most valuable aspects of his work, this study provides clear demonstration of Sombart's sense for fine cultural distinctions and broad cultural developments and the predictive power of his analyses. It should be of interest to sociologists, economists, political scientists and specialists in cultural studies.

KW - Werner Sombart

KW - social scientist

KW - Germany

KW - National Socialism

KW - capitalism

KW - Marx

KW - Weber

KW - Nazis

KW - urbanism

KW - luxury consumption

KW - fashion

KW - cultural secularization

KW - love

M3 - Chapter

SN - 9780765800305

SP - ix-lxii

BT - Economic Life in the Modern Age: Werner Sombart

A2 - Grundmann, Reiner

A2 - Stehr, Nico

PB - Transaction

CY - Piscataway (US)

ER -

Grundmann R, Stehr N. Introduction. In Grundmann R, Stehr N, editors, Economic Life in the Modern Age: Werner Sombart. Piscataway (US): Transaction. 2001. p. ix-lxii