Analysis Of The Century Of The Self

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The second half of The Century of the Self continues to track how society, capitalism, and politics have changed over time to become as individualized as they are today. In the first half of the documentary, we learned that society had been conditioned by big business to let their wants and desired take main control of their functioning. This is how business sold products, and then eventually politics got involved and realized they could get votes with similar methods. In this half of the documentary, society started to fight back against industry and the state using these manipulative techniques on them to achieve their own goals. People began looking inward for happiness rather than depending on the state and corporations. Eventually,…show more content…
Weber explains that in the protestant, belief system, particularly Calvinism, existed predestination, where some individuals were predestined to go to heaven, and others were not. People, naturally, wanted to look for signs to be sure that they were part of the chosen group and felt severe anxiety about the topic. To push out this anxiety, people began to focus on their own work, forcing themselves to believe that good works were a sign of being one of the saved. Thus, people became more individualized and secular, focusing on how they could create good works to be sure they are part of the saved. In both of these cases, people were looking to relieve themselves from unwanted feelings and turned inward toward themselves, making a more individualistic society. Although this small aspect is similar, further explanation by Weber of the Protestant ethic seems very contradictory to the ideas presented in The Century of the…show more content…
Weber describes the three types of political leaders: traditional, charismatic, and legal (p. 79). The President of The United States falls under the category of a charismatic leader; he must win the liking of the people in order to be put in the position of leader. Weber explains that people follow these leaders because they truly believe in them. This aligns with the political happenings depicted in The Century of the Self. Clinton had to change his policies to fulfill what the people wanted in order to remain in power and the belief of the people. The society at the time being increasingly individualistic, did not want policies that catered to the good of society as a whole, but to them as individuals. Through analyzing the changes in society shown in The Century of the Self, as well as the ideas put forth by Weber, it is difficult to come to a solid conclusion. When speaking of politics, Weber’s writing seem to still be relevant to recent society. Moreover, he also did believe that society was becoming more individualized. However, Weber’s ideas that people would not use wealth to enjoy the material pleasures of life does not seem to apply to society
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