Weber is increasingly being recognised as the theorist of modernity. Avoiding the mistakes of other classical thinkers, his sociological analysis has an increasing validity and relevance. Selected by one of the world's leading Weber scholars, this book introduces the work of this key thinker to a new generation of readers. Central themes highlighted in the collection are: * the developmental logic of world religions * the rise of modern capitalism * the multi-dimensionality of power in societies * the dilemmas of modernity * the theory of social action * ideal types and the objectivity of knowledge. The majority of the readings have been specially translated for this collection both to improve accuracy and to make Weber speak anew in the idiom of the twenty-first century. Each part opens with a short introduction explaining the sequence of readings, the flow of ideas and their intellectual context, and concludes with a guide to further reading.