• The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism

  • By: Max Weber
  • Narrated by: Monroe Clark McBride
  • Length: 5 hrs and 17 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (109 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Max Weber's best-known and most controversial work, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, first published in 1904, remains to this day powerful and fascinating. Weber's highly accessible style is just one of many reasons for his continuing popularity. The book contends that the Protestant ethic made possible and encouraged the development of capitalism in the West. Widely considered as the most informed work ever written on the social effects of advanced capitalism, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism holds its own as one of the most significant books of the 20th century. The book is one of those rare works of scholarship which no informed citizen can afford to ignore.

Public Domain (P)2017 Cherry Hill Publishing, LLC
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

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What listeners say about The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism

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    4 out of 5 stars

A missed opportunity

The content of Weber's book is well worth familiarizing yourself with. However, the dull and dry tone of the narrator makes it a struggle to listen to. This is made worse by numerous occasions where the narrator stumbles over his words. The sound engineer really dropped the ball here by not suggesting another attempt at the reading, or at least editing the mishaps. I was also surprised to find that the final chapter was nothing but music, and not a very good selection at that. I don't like to criticize all of these details, but for an audiobook production, it's poorly done. Max Weber clearly took his time to provide a detailed account of the protestant influence in capitalism, so its a shame that what could have been a captivating listen turned out to be a chore.

3 people found this helpful

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Very good unprejudiced scholar

It is refreshing to read a book by a real scholar. Hey makes very good points very accurately. A must read for any civilized person.

6 people found this helpful

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Great Jump Start

This is a challenging book in audio from because it's so dense with content. It is a proper gateway into the subject of how religious ethos affected the culture around good work ethic. Several other books on similar topics were written around this time period and are worth exploring as well.
I was lectured on this book from a Marxist professor who thought capitalism and religion were both evil and exploitative. It's no wonder she never made us read directly from the source, otherwise her students would doubt what she was preaching.
Instant classic in my opinion. It also helped answer some questions I had about different religious denominations in the US and what they believed in.

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Informative

More insightful than I thought it would be, however it’s dense with historical and religious references. You’ll need a strong understanding of Christian theology to even enjoy this partially.

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  • Bluesview
  • 05-22-18

This is an academic essay

This is an important book, still very significant today but is not easy for the lay reader to fully comprehend on first listening - for me short listenings, say 30 minutes, every day and re-listening allowed me to grasp and consider what Weber is saying. The narrator assists the reader and does not get in the way, he has a voice that is smooth yet engaging. Keep in mind that the essay was written over 100 years ago.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 01-28-22

Great Book, Awful Narration

I really enjoyed reading this book. It's one of those books that I should have read in college, but now I'm making up for it.

I listened and read at the same time, which meant that I had two ways of absorbing the text. This helped, because at times it isn't the easiest book in the world to understand. However, if you understand Weber's thesis before you get into it (it is well known these days) it shouldn't be too hard. The theology is a bit tough at times, so I would recommend some basic understanding of Protestant ideas before tackling it.

The real downside to the whole experience was Monroe's narration. I really find it difficult to listen to his gravelly, tired voice. Perhaps he should be in the business of narrating movie trailers, but definitely not modern interpretations of Protestant theology. He mispronounces words, slurs his speech, and misreads thought groups frequently throughout the book. At times, I gave up on the audiobook and just read. That way I could focus on the content more, instead of being distracted by poor narration.

Weber's work is a classic though, and should be read by anyone with an interest in the origins of capitalism.

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  • ayman
  • 02-06-18

Boring book

So boring book
The reading was really good but the book itself is so boring

1 person found this helpful