The Theory of Social and Economic Organization

The Theory of Social and Economic Organization

The Theory of Social and Economic Organization

The Theory of Social and Economic Organization

Excerpt

The volume herewith presented to the English-speaking public is a translation of Part 1 of Max Weber Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft, which was in turn originally published as Volume III of the collaborative work Grundriss der Sozialoekonomik, in the planning of which Weber played a major role. Its relation to Weber's work as a whole is explained in the editor's Introduction. It is, however, relatively self-contained so as to appear suitable for separate publication in translation. The choice of an English title, for which the editor is wholly responsible, is meant to designate this independent significance.

The project for publication of this translation antedates the war. Its origin lay in a draft translation of Chapters I and II which was made by Mr. A. M. Henderson for Messrs. William Hodge & Co. Ltd. of London and Edinburgh. The present editor undertook, at the publisher's request, to revise and edit this draft. It was originally planned that Mr. Henderson would submit drafts also of Chapters III and IV, but his war service prevented this. Hence the present translation of the first two chapters is a rather free revision of Mr. Henderson's draft; the translation of the third and fourth chapters is wholly the editor's. Mr. Henderson has had no opportunity to see the final version, so entire responsibility for departures from his draft must be taken by the editor.

Publication has been long delayed by difficulties created by the war. I can only express my admiration for the persistence of the English publishers in continuing to adhere to the enterprise in spite of these difficulties and in bringing it to final fruition, and for their tolerance in publishing a fundamental work by an enemy national at such a time. We can, however, agree that the universality of science transcends even the conflict of war. The American edition has been reprinted from the page proofs of the English.

Besides the aid given by Mr. Henderson's draft, I should like to acknowledge the help derived from a draft translation of Chapter I, Sec-

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