Citizenship in Max Weber

Jack Barbalet*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Weber discusses citizenship in both historical and contemporary settings. In treating his account of the citizenship of medieval urban communities in Europe and also modern citizenship of the twentieth-century nation state, especially in Germany during World War I, Weber's focus on a common underpinning military dimension of citizenship is noted. His purpose in outlining early European citizenship is associated with his larger argument concerning the uniqueness of Western rationalization. The concept of modern national citizenship derives its meaning from Weber's political conception of national interest, and the fate such an interest imposes on those subordinate to its power. A curious feature of Weber's account of citizenship in his diverse writings is a failure to provide an ideal-type conceptualization of it.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-216
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Classical Sociology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • citizenship
  • city
  • fate
  • ideal type
  • military
  • national interest


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