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The Study of Political Science

Also like Weber, Marx engages in universal generalizations, moving beyond the French revolution and its effects to argue that a universal tendency of revolution clearly exists which is susceptible to observation.

Dependent variables are, again like those treated by Weber, constructed as phenomena contrasted to an ideal of natural order, but the independent variable is seen as of necessity varying on those criteria that distinguish the phenomenon from the natural background. The critical difference between the analysis of Marx and Weber centers upon the nature of the argument. In the case of the latter, as was described above, the argument was made from meaning; in the case of Marx, the argument is made from class interest. This concerns what directs action rather than what action accomplishes or what it means. Marx (50--51), therefore, would write that

What makes [some persons] representativesa[of a class is not membership in the class but] the fact that in their mind they do not get beyond the limits which the latter do not get beyond in life, that they are constantly driven, theoretically, to the same problems and solutions to which material interest and social position drive the latter practically (Marx 50-51).

The "argument from class interest" in Marx represents a rejection of the argument from meaning as contained in Weber. It also is an argument against individual motive and other arguments from class interest. In aggregating statements about classes, as parts of society, into propositions about the political institutions of a whole society, Marx (p. 25) relied upon the concept of a class alliance: "During June days all classes and parties had united in the party of Order against the proletarian class as the party of Anarchy, of Socialism, of Communism."

A critical distinction between Marx and Weber is that in terms of the comparative method, Weber takes the position that something that happened once before ...

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The Study of Political Science. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 16:05, February 21, 2017, from
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