Pub. date: 2011 | Online Pub. Date: October 04, 2011 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412994163 | Print ISBN: 9781412959636 | Online ISBN: 9781412994163| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
The three sections of this entry examine the very complex and controversial political phenomenon commonly referred to as the state . The first section presents a conceptual statement that takes as its point of departure the ideal-typical treatment of the state presented at the beginning of the 20th century by the German scholar Max Weber (1864–1920). This choice reflects the significant influence that treatment exercised, over the remainder of that century, within the disciplines of law, political science, and sociology. (Note that Weber's arguments, while markedly original in parts, echoed and elaborated theoretical views widely shared within the juridical and social science literature of his time, both in Germany itself and elsewhere. However, neither at the time nor later were they universally accepted as valid.). Included here are comments that support, qualify, and modify Weber's own treatment. The next section of the entry summarizes the major historical developments that in ...