Proefschrift ter verkrijging van de graad van doctor aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam op gezag van de Rector Magnificus prof. dr. P.W.M. de Meijer, ingevolge het besluit van het College van Dekanen, in het openbaar te verdedigen in de Aula van de Universiteit op 11 april 1994, om 15.00 uur
Anna Catharina Van Baalen
geboren te Den Haag
Dissertation University of Amsterdam 1994
Promotor: Prof. mr dr I.C. van der Vlies
Faculteit der Politieke en Sociaal-culturele Wetenschappen
I wish to thank
Inge van der Vlies, for het courageous support of a project for the execution of which I had yet to invent the instruments.
Frederike van Leeuwen, for the artistic way in which she translated my attempts at English and the thoughts hidden in them into a real language
Marijke Ekelschot, for all her words and deeds for more than sixteen years of public-private partnership and, particularly, for her daunting close-reading talents which enabled me to finish this book
Abbreviations Introduction: the search for explanation of the phenomenon of the underrepresentation of women in positions of command in modern bureaucracies - 1
1. The feminist claim to equality with men versus the exclusion of women from the brotherhood of equal men; the struggle with universalist concepts and the conceptual separation of public and private life - 1
2. Two options to connect sex-defined to sex-neutral concepts - 3
3. Bureaucracy and masculine domination in Max Weber's Economy and Society - 6
Ch. 1. Max Weber's universalist sociology of bureaucracy: the contradiction between public rationalism and private masculinism - 9
1. Separation of public and private life as a characteristic of Weber's ideal type of bureaucracy - 9
2. Sociology as rational social science: the separation of facts and values and the creation of the abstract individual as consequences of the separation of public and private life - 12
3. Adequate causation and chance - 15
4. Weber's rational construction of ideal types and its limits - 17
5. From the understanding of 'action orientations' to the construction of ideal types of legitimate domination - 19
6. Ideal types of developments; the problem of causality in an irrational world; Weber's law of unintended consequences; 'paradoxical causation' - 23
7. The contrast between formal and material rationality - 25
8. The origins of rational bureaucracy in Europe: Weber's unfinished analysis - 29
9. Resistances to rationalization: the modern family - 30
10. Conclusion: the irrationality of formal rationality - 33
Ch. 2. The Webers' private, sex-defined values - 34
1. Weber's separation of science and politics versus Weber-Schnitger's
value-bound science - 34
2. Introduction to Weber's political texts Parliament and Government and Politics as a Vocation - 36
3. Nationalism and militarism; politics as independent leadership: as a fight for power in the state, which is defined by its monopoly of physical violence - 37
4. Leadership and entrepreneurship; Beamtenherrschaft as anti-political force - 39
5. Parliamentary democracy; the superiority of the leadership in England and America - 40
6. Masculinism and the manly virtues - 42
7. The discussion on the 'matriarchy' - 44
8. Weber-Schnitger's Ehefrau und Mutter in der Rechtsentwicklung - 47
Ch. 3. Private versus public sphere: the origins of household and kin group - 53
1. Weber's shift from 'traditional social order' to 'traditional domination' and from there to 'patriarchal domination' - 53
2. Weber on matriarchy - 54
3. The household and its masculine authority - 57
4. Kinship as a public formation; the establishment by status contract of sister-trading fraternizations - 59
5. From 'masculine-dominated household' to 'patriarchy' - 63
Ch. 4. Relations between men: from routinization of charisma to patriarchal domination over men - 66
1. Introduction. Weber's reverse representation of the origins of legal patriarchy - 66
2. 'Charisma' as a personal characteristic - 67
3. The appropriation and production of charisma - 70
4. Routinization and monopolization of charisma. Charismatic education. Transformation of charisma into group membership - 71
5. Proofs of manhood and the reversal of the burden of proof; monopolization of masculinity by warrior fraternities - 72
6. The men's house - 75
7. From the men's house to legal patriarchy: from warrior fraternity by plutocratization of charisma to status group and caste - 78
8. Positive and negative status honor; masculine and feminine values - 82
9. Caste and ethnic segregation - 84
10. Property of land and people: military caste and patriarchal 'familia' - 85
11. The 'oikos' as an economic conceptualization of the formal patriarchal household - 87
Ch. 5. Expansion of patriarchy by decentralization and affiliation. Political patrimonialism as masculine domination by an hierarchy of unfree men - 89
1. Decentralization of the patriarchal household: patrimonial domination - 89
2. Political domination: the patrimonial state and the affiliation of free men - 90
3. The patrimonial officials and their ambiguous position - 94
4. Estate patrimonialism: administration by free men - 96
Ch. 6. Feudalism. Decentralization of patrimonialism into political domination by an hierarchy of free men - 99
1. Feudalism between patrimonial hierarchy and charismatic fraternization - 99
2. The breach with kinship by charismatic robber bands and other
military fraternizations - 100
3. Feudalism as affiliation of free men with patrimonial power; fusion of contradictory patriarchal and charismatic aspects - 102
4. Feudal mentality and education - 103
5. Feudalism and the decentralization of patrimonial power - 104
6. England: centralized feudalism and rule by honoratiores; justices of the peace and gentlemen - 105
7. Weber's contrast between feudal Great Britain and patrimonial Germany - 109
Ch 7. The city: new fraternities of patriarchs - 111
1. Winckelmann on the city as a form of non-legitimate domination; non-legitimate domination as a breach with 'tradition' - 111
2. Revolutionary charisma and democratic dictatorship - 113
3. The market as an impersonal association - 114
4. Market centers in general versus the occidental autonomous 'communes' and 'burgher-estates' - 116
5. The medieval western city as a breach with kinship tradition and the creation of new associations of real men -117
6. The patriciate: the breach with patrimonialism; the establishment of an administration by honoratiores - 119
7. The breach with the patriciate: democracy and dictatorship; the establishment of formal-rational law and administration - 120
8. Demilitarization of medieval citizens: the citizen as 'homo economicus' - 122
10. Excursus on the situation of city women: the contradictory developments of emancipation and domestication - 126
11. The continuity of patriarchal domination and its contradiction with bourgeois freedom and equality - 128
12. England: unmilitary cities and the development of a national burgher estate - 129
13. Charismatic legitimacy for burgher status groups: financial success - 131
14. The influence of the city on the rationalization of patrimonialism; the end of city autonomy on the Western European continent - 134
Ch. 8. Connections between formal rationality and patriarchal-patrimonial domination over and through unfree men - 137
1. The connections between Weber's universalist method and his conceptualization of bureaucratization as a linear development from patriarchal-patrimonial administration - 137
2. The Ständestaat as a compromise between patrimonial, feudal and city power - 138
3. The development of capitalism: mercantilism and industrialization - 140
4. Patriarchal patrimonialism as the destruction of the freedom and equality of the patrimonial landlords in Russia - 142
5. Formal-rational legitimation of patrimonialism: reception of the formal structures of Roman Law - 144
6. Material-rational legitimation of patrimonialism: the welfare state - 147
7. Rationalization of patrimonial bureaucracy: central official, clerks and
collegiate bodies - 148
8. The victory of patrimonialism in Germany and its influence on German mentality - 151
9. The mentality of 'the patriarchal-patrimonial official' - 152
10. 'Staatsraison': the fusion of formal and patriarchal-material rationality into rationalized patriarchal patrimonialism - 154
Ch. 9. Connections between formal rationality and charismatic domination over and through free men: the continuing role of magic in the construction of impersonal patriarchal fraternities; from Ständestaat to revolution - 157
1. The continuing role of magic in the construction of impersonal patriarchal fraternities - 157
2. Formalism: from magic to Roman conceptual juridical thought - 159
3. Charisma of church and state offices - 161
4. Rationalization of charismatic education into examinations of 'expertise' - 162
5. Inner-worldly asceticism and its routinization: the protestant ethic and the
new bourgeois - 164
6. Rational discipline as inverted charisma - 168
7. Formal rationality as a belief - 171
Ch. 10. Hidden masculinity: impersonal bureaucracy as a result of the unsolvable conflict between fraternity and patriarchy - 173
1. The revolutionary origins of bureaucracy: liberty, equality, fraternity and plebiscitary dictatorship - 173
2. 'Impersonality' as a result of the insolvable contradiction of the personal patriarchal and fraternal relations between men - 175
3. The limits of interpretive sociology. Repression from consciousness: Weber's 'unconscious rationality' as a paradoxical connection between formal and material rationality - 176
4. The return of the repressed consciousness of the sex-defined character of modern relations in the public sphere: the struggle against the entrance of women and non-white men in bureaucratic position which threatens to break the identity of positions of authority and proofs of manhood - 179
Summary - 181
Nederlandse samenvatting - 186
References – 191
Abbreviations: * indicates a variation in the translation
The works of the Webers are indicated as follows:
Biography: Max Weber: A Biography, John Wiley and Sons, New York, 1975
EuM: Ehefrau und Mutter in der Rechtsentwicklung, Eine Einführung (1907), Scientia Verlag Aalen, 1971
Lebensbild: Max Weber. Ein Lebensbild (1926), Verlag Lambert Schneider, Heidelberg 1950
Weber-Schnitger (1919): Frauenfragen und Frauengedanken der Frau. Gesammelte Aufsätze, J.C.B. Mohr, Tübingen, 1919
DpE: Die protestantische Ethik und der Geist der Kapitalismus, Eine Aufsatzsammlung (1904/5), hrsg. von J. Winckelmann, Siebenstern Taschenbuch Verlag, Hamburg, 1920, 4. Aufl. 1975
EK: Ueber einige Kategorien der verstehenden Soziologie (1913), GAzW p. 427 ff.
ES: Economy and Society, Ed. by Guenther Roth and Claus Wittich, University of California Press, Berkeley, Los Angeles, London, 1978
GAzR: Gesammelte Aufsätze zur Religionssoziologie, 1920, 4. Aufl., Mohr, Tübingen
GAzSS: Gesammelte Aufsätze zur Soziologie und Sozialpolitik, Mohr, Tübingen, 1924/1988
GAzW: Gesammelte Aufsätze zur Wissenschaftslehre, 5e Aufl., Hrsg. J. Winckelmann, Mohr, Tübingen, 1982
GPS: Id., Gesammelte Politische Schriften, 2e Aufl. hrsg. Johannes Winckelmann, Mohr, Tübingen, 1958
On Universities, The Power of the State and the Dignity of the Academic Calling in Imperial Germany, Transl. and ed. by Edward Shils, The University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London, 1973
MSS: The Methodology of the Social Sciences, Transl. and ed. by E. A. Shils and H.A. Finch, The Free Press, New York, 1949
PG: 'Parlament und Regierung im neugeordneten Deutschland, Zur politischen Kritik des Beamtentums und Parteiwesens' ('Parliament and Government in a reconstructed Germany, A Contribution to the Political Critique of Officialdom and Party Politics)', GPS p. 294 ff., ES p. 1381 ff.
PV: 'Politik als Beruf' ('Politics as a Vocation') GPS p. 493 ff., FMW p. 77 ff.
SV: 'Wissenschaft als Beruf' ('Science as a Vocation'), GAzW p. 582 ff.
TPE: The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, transl. by T. Parsons, Harper Collins Academic, 1930/1991
WG: Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft, Grundriß der Verstehenden Soziologie, 1920, Studienausgabe, besorgt von Johannes Winckelmann, 5e Aufl., Mohr, Tübingen, 1976
- - - - - - - - -
Introduction: the search for explanation of the phenomenon of the underrepresentation of women in positions of command in modern bureaucracies
The feminist claim to equality with men versus the exclusion of women from the brotherhood of equal men; the struggle with universalist concepts and the conceptual separation of public and private life - 1
2. Two options to connect sex-defined to sex-neutral concepts - 3
3. Bureaucracy and masculine domination in Max Weber's Economy and Society - 5
1. The feminist claim to equality with men versus the exclusion of women from the brotherhood of equal men; the struggle with universalist concepts and the conceptual separation of public and private life.
In democratic societies which proclaim the formal equality of all subjects, entire areas of social and economic activity are monopolized by men. Positions of command in particular are considered a masculine prerogative. Although affirmative action programs designed to support women in their claim to access to these positions have at times caused some change, female leaders are no more than exceptions which prove the rule.1
The long and arduous fight for formal equality between women and men started with the declarations of human rights of the French and American revolutions. Feminists formulated their claims within the framework of Enlightenment universalism: if all men are equal, equality includes women. As the women of the Seneca Falls Convention in 1848 formulated it:
'We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men and women are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; that to secure these rights governments are instituted, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.'2
The burden of proof that women really are human, however, was still placed on the feminists. Universal human rights on which formal democracy was based did not automatically apply to them; they had to fight the whole body of rules which implemented their exclusion. Today most human rights have been acquired, many discriminatory rules have been abolished3 and universalist rules are declared to include women. Yet application of these rules still confers the largest part of wealth, power and prestige to men, although 'brotherhood' has been deleted from the public relations slogans of Western society. Women still have to prove that they possess exceptional qualities to gain leadership functions. Feminists therefore still feel compelled to keep explaining that women have the same 'capabilities' as men4, that they possess 'toutes les facultés intellectuelles'5, do not lack 'competence' or 'quality'6; in general, that they do not differ in any important respect from men7; they keep hoping that once they have argued these facts conclusively, universalist rules will be applied to women in equal measure.
Universalist democracy presents women with a paradox. Western-type societies rule the world by their power of organization: enormous numbers of people become encapsulated in coherent social 'systems', in which many of them have the positions of autonomous 'members'. Many more, however, are excluded from such positions - though often no formal difference between insiders and outsiders has been established; neither do the excluded have any effective recourse against their exclusion: formal equality has been granted them and it is considered their own responsibility to implement it.
Abstract universalism denies the sex- and color-defined character of modern domination. This is why all kinds of feminists have attacked the early modern separation of a 'personal' or 'private' sphere which is ruled by 'nature', 'passions', 'drives', 'instincts', or other biological forces on the one hand, from a rational, universalist 'political' or 'public' sphere on the other one; for this separation serves to create exceptions to the rule that rational claims to freedom and equality are universally valid.8
'Universalism' can be defined as a characteristic of specific historical rule systems which have been established by men to confer to all men the inalienable rights of free and equal brothers and to exclude women, whose labor, by the same rules, has been defined as property or potential property of men. The power potential of formal democracy as a form of social organization lies in its inclusiveness: for the first time in history all men are potential members of those groups which organize the division of riches and labor; therefore they are motivated to fight for entrance in and willing to comply with demands for loyalty and obedience.9 2. Two options to connect sex-defined to sex-neutral concepts Viewed sociologically instead of juridically, universalist rule systems are upheld by human beings who function in 'bureaucratic society' in general and in 'bureaucracies' or 'organizations'10 in particular and who orient their actions to a consistent hierarchy of command and obedience based on these rules. Bureaucracies organize production and domination nationally and internationally; a person who is excluded from positions of authority inside them has to work for her or his livelihood.
Since the rules on which modern bureaucracies are based mostly have a universalist character, the rule of formal equality should determine access to leadership positions; this means that everybody who possesses the knowledge of rules and their application - a knowledge which is called 'competence', 'quality', 'expertise' - required for a leadership function, should have the same chance of access, regardless of his or her personal characteristics.11
The struggle to have sex defined as one of the personal characteristics which should not influence access to bureaucratic positions is an important part of the struggle of the feminist movements of the last two centuries. So far, however, women have mostly been granted entrance into those bureaucratic positions which give authority over children or over other women; they have to obey men and seldom command them; if they work among men, they are treated as dependents instead of as equals.
Social theories on 'bureaucracy' do not mention this phenomenon. This is because they have been formulated in the same universalist terms as the rules their objects are based on and therefore they only mention 'men' in the sense of 'people' or 'people' in the sense of 'men', depending on the language; the 'generic he'12 is used to designate 'the individual', regardless of its sex. The relations between women and men are considered to be private and therefore excluded from the analysis.
Feminist social scientists who want to explain either the barriers
to entrance of women into bureaucracies or organizations or the characteristics of the position of those who happened to gain access, therefore meet with difficult problems. They have to connect the experience of women inside and outside of bureaucracies13 and the feminist concepts formulated by feminists to generalize this experience, with the concepts organization sociologists developed to explain the position of the different 'individuals' in the organization and the changes in those positions. To make this connection two options present themselves: one can try either to translate the factors that define the position of women versus the 'organization' or 'bureaucracy' into the factors that define the position of sex-neutral 'individuals' according to universalist sociology, or one can try to translate the sex-neutral concepts of universalist sociology in sex-defined terms.
If the first option is chosen, universalist sociology is enriched with some more 'laws', formulated in sex-neutral concepts. The most famous of these is the 'law of numbers' which was formulated in 1977 by Rosabeth Moss Kanter. It says that as soon as people who work in an organization or department, where they form a minority of a 'significant social type'14 which is deviant from the 'significant social type' of the majority, they become either totally invisible or too visible to the majority.15 In the latter case they become 'tokens'.
The concept 'token' was formulated by the black and feminist movements: the token black, the token woman, is the exception who proves the rule - the exclusion of blacks or women16 - by displaying all the stereotyped characteristics members of the majority expect; the majority then reacts by in its turn exaggerating its own stereotyped characteristics.
Kanter takes all her illustrations of her concept of 'numbers' from her own experience as an organization adviser and from reports of other women in organizations, which she found in feminist texts. As soon as a token woman appears on the scene, the men around her become more masculinist, especially in social contacts outside the formal work situation: young men brag about their sexual victories, older men of their business ones.17 The token woman is visible only as a woman, not as a colleague; if she tries to show her achievements, the men, fearing she performs better, often retaliate. She is also pressurized to turn against other women, since she has to share the men's notions about her own sex: to believe that women just are not able to perform the tasks she herself performs.18
The token woman is therefore compelled to conform to female stereotypes - she can only choose which one.19 Kanter's analysis here echoes the feminist theory that in patriarchal culture men divide women in 'mothers' and 'whores'; to the types of 'mother' and 'seducer', though, she adds those of the 'iron lady' - unmarried aunt - and 'mascot' - 'kid sister'. Of all these only the iron lady expects equal treatment from men; since men do not know how to deal with her claim, she finds herself isolated. One could summarize Kanter's description in the statement that the token woman can be seen both as the symbol of equality between women and men and as a living proof of their inequality.
Kanter's approach of 'numbers' is easy to criticize: any investigation of the situation of men who form a minority among women will show that their 'visibility' results in quite different conduct of everybody concerned; while minority women are treated like Cinderellas, minority men lead the lives of crown princes.20 Thus the sex-neutrality of the concept 'numbers' limits even its potential for description of behavior. It can only be applied to organizations in which men form a majority, only as long as it is complemented with explicitly sex-defined feminist concepts and experiences which are no elements of the concept itself. Yet even then it cannot serve to explain why the position of the male minority member is the reverse of that of the female one.
When they try to explain the differences in the effects of sex-neutral social 'laws' on the positions of women and men feminist sociologists often take recourse to other sex-neutral concepts, such as the concept of 'status'. If one takes the fact that men have a higher status than women for granted,21 the 'law of numbers' can be formulated in a sex-defined way: since men have a higher status than women, their minority position and the attendant visibility result in positive attention for them from the low-status women.22 When formulated in this way, however, this law is not social at all: the phenomenon that men have a higher 'status' than women cannot be understood rationally and thus appears to be unchangeable.
Universalist concepts cannot explain social relations between women and men in modern democratic society, since those concepts are based on a separation of 'public' life from sex-defined 'private' life. Only the second option - to employ sex-defined concepts - can provide an insight into the masculinist character of 'public' domination. If sex-neutral concepts, such as 'organization' or 'status' are translated in sex-defined ones, the connection between the possession of a male member and the membership of bureaucratic fraternities can be rationally understood.
To transform the concept 'bureaucracy' into a sex-defined concept it has to be connected with the concepts social theory makes use of to understand the relations of private life. Only by overcoming the separation of public and private life can 'bureaucracy' be understood as a set of social relations between women and men; these relations can then be shown to be defined by the contradiction between formal equality - which, being the foundation of the relations between men, forbids men to exclude women or other persons defined as lacking the correct masculine characteristics from these relations - and the patriarchal private relations between men and women or other non-persons.
The separation of public and private life in modern society, however, is 'a real mystification'23: it is not only an ideology supported and reinforced by science, but it is a historical characteristic of the institutions of modern society itself. In order to be able to analyze modern relations between women and men the history of the 'institutions' which define their lives has to be investigated.24 3. Bureaucracy and masculine domination in Max Weber's Economy and Society
The first comprehensive sociological analysis of modern Western democratic society and of the societies preceding it was written in the beginning of the century by the German sociologist Max Weber. He founded modern universalist sociology, of which both the method and the central object are based on the opposition of public and private life.
Since Weber opposed the rationality of science - the realm of facts - to the 'irrationality of the world' - the realm of values -, he chose a comparative method to understand 'irrational' phenomena in a rational way. He therefore constructs logically consistent 'ideal types' to compare the social actions of individuals to, in order to understand them rationally. His method opposes facts and values, reason and emotion, rationality and irrationality, science and politics; his central object, the bureaucracy which dominates modern society, is based, according to him, on a separation of public from private property, of reasons of state from the feelings of the officials, of administration from politics.
The correspondence of Weber's method and his scientific object seems to result in an analysis of modern reality which is impervious to rational feminist criticism, since it relegates relations between women and men irrevocably to the 'private' sphere of emotions, values and irrational notions.
Yet Weber's work, in contrast to many later sociological theories, offers many starting-points for an analysis in sex-defined terms. This is because his sociology is a historical one. He does not only aim to explain the workings of modern bureaucratic society in its own terms, but also to understand its genesis: its development from other social formations. And since no other society has explained its own foundations in the sex-neutral terms of 'human' freedom and equality, relations of women and men emerge from his historical analysis.
Weber therefore presents two sets of concepts: those constructed to understand the bureaucratic aspects of modern society, and those constructed to understand other - in his terms 'irrational' - social formations. The latter concepts can be shown to be sex-defined, that is connected to relations between women and men; they can be used to connect feminist knowledge of modern relations between women and men to historical knowledge represented in Weber's sociology.
Before I can use the knowledge Weber presents in ES to understand the development of the relations between women and men in Western society,
his separation between the concepts he constructed to understand respectively 'rational' and 'irrational' social formations has to be explained. For since these sets of concepts are based on different parts of Weber's consciousness - respectively on that of his scientific thinking about the public world, and on that of his emotions about problems of private life - they are different in character and therefore are developed in a different way.
I will show that Weber's 'logical constructions' of 'irrational' social formations - which in my interpretations are relations in the private sphere, relations between women and men and between 'men' and 'not-men' - are not logical at all: they are full of 'paradoxes', 'inversions of meaning' and 'fluent transitions between opposites'.
These conceptual manipulations enable him to speculate on the history of 'irrational' social formations by constructing conceptual developments in a reverse way. He first projects modern phenomena - the domination of the father in the family of his time and the compelling powers of the extraordinary person - back into history as respectively 'traditional' and 'charismatic' 'domination', and then develops these concepts in such a way that known historical phenomena - like 'patriarchy' or 'knighthood' - can be defined by them.
His speculations on the 'origins' of institutions which are described in written history or 'ethnology' therefore are hidden in conceptual manipulations. Moreover, since the concept 'rationality' is a static one - 'rationalization' indicating only changes in what is being 'rationalized' - his search for the origins of 'rationality' also is to be found in the development of 'irrational' social forms and in the conceptual manipulations needed to establish connections between 'irrational' and 'rational' formations, which are also formulated with the help of 'contradictions' and 'fluent transitions between opposites'.
For a better understanding of Weber's method and of the contents of his sociology I will analyze his private values as he represented them explicitly in his political writings and implicitly in his method and his sociology, and even more implicitly in the values which his wife, Marianne Weber-Schnitger, proclaimed in 'Ehefrau und Mutter in der Rechtsentwicklung', on which he cooperated.
If the overt and convert workings of Weber's mind, as they appear from his writings, have been clarified, the historical knowledge which is transferred in Weber's sociology has to be translated in rational terms. This can be done because Weber does not only constructs modern concepts to understand historical relations, but also derives concepts from historical relations. These historical concepts connect his otherwise separate constructions of the economic, social, religious, political, juridical and military spheres to each other.
The concepts of 'office' and 'household' are such historical concepts. In his attempts to understand the history of 'rationality' itself, Weber analyzed a disintegration process of 'the bourgeois household', caused by the growing money economy, in which 'the office' was separated from it; in this way he located the separation of public and private spheres in historical reality. Following Marx' and Freud's theories on the connections between being and consciousness, I presume that the effects of the growing money economy did not only separate 'private' relations from 'public' ones, but that bourgeois consciousness was split in a 'private' and a 'public' sphere as well. A contradiction developed between the official world of men, which increasingly was ruled by principles of freedom and equality, and the household world of women, which remained defined by patriarchal domination. Since both worlds were only connected by patriarchal relations, the official world took precedence over the private one; the patriarchal relations which connect both worlds and dominate household relations were increasingly repressed from consciousness and therefore only represented in 'irrational' or 'ideological' - indirect, transformed and inverted - ways.
In 'official' theory therefore only 'official' relations between men were represented; 'household' relations were conceptualized as irrational 'tradition' and even as 'nature' - as defined by 'passions', 'drives', 'instincts' or 'genes' - and therefore as being outside of the reach of rational masculine knowledge. Knowledge of the private sphere becomes 'women's knowledge', which is only of interest for men if it is transformed into - irrational - art.
The interest of Weber's sociology is that he did not totally deny this kind of knowledge, although he refused to give it official status. By deviating from his own standards of the 'logical consistency' of concepts, he provided an abundance of - mostly implicitly formulated - insights into causal relations between social actions of historical individuals, which include also many cases in which the historical actors according to Weber were not (fully) conscious of the interests they wanted to serve.
Although any reconstruction of relations between historical actors finds its limits in Weber's self-admitted lack of a theory on the relation between being and consciousness, I will connect many of his fragmented analyses of specific European developments to each other. The central concept of this reconstruction is the historical concept of 'patriarchy', which Weber included in his analysis of 'irrational domination'. By translating his sex-neutral concepts in his sex-defined ones, I will present a theory on the origins and the modernization processes of Western masculine domination for which Weber in spite of himself provided the material.
Since the historical parts of Weber's sociology are not well known, this will mean that I will not only present a criticism of its irrational aspects, but also a summary of those parts in which he, in my view, gives a rational account of historical social relations.