Discuss the theory of ideal type given by Weber

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Discuss the theory of ideal type.

Weber defines Ideal Types as –“an analytical construct that serves the investigator as a measuring rod to ascertain similarities as well as deviations in concrete cases.” In other words, it is a methodological tool that helps to make sense out of the ambiguity of social reality.

There are a few characteristics of Ideal Types that should be kept in mind. First and the foremost characteristic of ideal types is that they do not exist in reality. Although, ideal types may be formulated and put together on the basis of number of elements of reality but it does not mean that you can find actual examples of ideal type in the real world. Ideal types are theoretical tools whose function is to aide in the better understanding of reality by acting as a standard of comparison. Therefore, ideal type can be thought of as a hypothetical construction, based on real phenomenon, which have explanatory value To explain this Giddeons gives the example of Weber’s work on the protestant ethic. He explains that the protestant ethic are taken from the writings of historical figures and involve those components of the Calvanist doctrine essential to formation of capatslist spirit according to Weber. But this ideal type does not indicate to the existence of any definite aspect of reality

Weber lays a lot of emphasis on the fact that the ideal types are mental constructs that depends on an individual’s ability to discern, comprehend and imagine the problems that are important and interesting enough to look into. Therefore, an ideal type can said to be subjective in nature since the problems that define the objectives of interest may be different for different people and therefore is not free from an individual’s value system or opinion. Ideal type can therefore be construed as a “one-sided model”. This concept intentionally focuses on those problems thought to be worth theorizing and testing. In...