Politics, Capitalism, And Politics Essay

Politics, Capitalism, And Politics Essay

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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, though, industry was able to once again use this for their own benefit and now took power not by attempting to repress the self, as was done in the first half of the documentary, but by feeding it and making people feel more individualized with their products. Politics followed in suite in promoting people focusing on what they want and gained voters, once again, with similar methods as business was using to gain buyers.
This documentary takes viewers through the path society has followed to become as focused on the individual as it is today. When looking at the happening presented in The Century of the Self and the ideas of Weber in his writings, one can see very clear similarities as well as some contradictions. Weber, in his writings, gave explanation to the inward focus of people that fits quite well with the happenings depicted in the documentary.
As society began to realize the hold that the state and industry had on them, they began to fight back. Some techniques were violent such a...


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... 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 today.

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