Question 1When and what to eat is a social fact. In most societies, food plays an important part in social life, and Denmark is definitely no exception. Not only is it commonly known when to eat, it is in most cases also given what to eat. A social gathering does nearly always contain a meal which forms the centre of the gathering, and in this case, everybody is supposed to eat the same. The “feeling of socialising” comes from being with other people, eating the same. Durkheim classifies a social fact as manners of acting, thinking and feeling external to the individual, which are invested with a coercive power by virtue of which they exercise control over him.
The individual who chooses ...view middle of the document...
My veganism lasted two years, after which I chose to comply with the social fact of eating.
Question 2The emerge of capitalism can be seen from different perspectives; according to Karl Marx history must be understood from beneath in the sense that human actions based on material conditions are the reason for consciousness and historical changes, whereas Max Weber half a century later criticised Marx' explanation, claiming history to be based on the human mind in which new ideas led to material changes.
Karl Marx explains in “The German Ideology” how ownership can be traced all the way back to tribal societies. Division of labour hence ownership has always existed, at first within the family where the man could be seen as the owner of his woman and children. From the beginning of history as well, the very first motive of man to act is the need to survive i.e. the need for food, clothes and shelter, but once these needs have been satisfied, new needs will arise. In order to fulfil his needs, man will need new means of production, both as tools and as the labour of at first his family. Tribal hunters become primitive farmers and start owning land which later on leads to the organisation in nations (cities or states) all with the intention of better organisation amongst the owners with the purpose of better controlling the owned, necessary to gain the most from production and seeing the full improvement of their material conditions.
When material conditions improve, man's basic need become still more advanced which creates a new need for production force. All throughout history slavery and later on serfs had been common as the main production force, but with the replacement of slaves and serfs by employed workers the ancient and later feudal system changed into capitalism. According to Marx's definition, a capitalist is a person whose income is the surplus value of other people's labour, the wage slaves.
Max Weber strongly disagreed with Marx on the theory that changes and history enter from below via human action according to material instincts, instead he argued that all change stems from human decisive action based on their beliefs.
Weber's theory is based in religion, and he argues that capitalism emerged from a change in work ethics due to changes in religion. In “The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism” he states that protestants in the first centuries after the reformation in the 16th and 17th centuries showed economic rationality. The explanation is found looking into the practices of the protestant sects inspired by the French theologian Jean Calvin which were widely spread in the countries with the most advanced capitalism in those centuries. According to their belief, God was omniscient, and everybody was born predestined. Unlike the Catholics, the Calvinist could not buy a ticket to heaven (indulgences), but they needed to believe that they had been predestined by God to go to Paradise. Doubt was an ill omen; it was...