chapter  4
30 Pages

The Bourgeois—Past and Present

ByWerner Sombart

Bourgeois the style of life still is even in the case of the wealthiest. Wealth was undoubtedly prized, and to obtain it was the passionate desire of every heart. For the conduct of the employer as a man may differ widely from his conduct as a tradesman. The attitude of the old-fashioned traders towards competition and to their customers sprang naturally from their business style. Business methods were such that in any given time you accomplished the least possible transactions. The object of the business man's work, of his worries, his pride and his aspirations is just his undertaking, be it a commercial company, factory, bank, shipping concern, theatre or railway. The business man is wholly devoted to making his business a flourishing, healthy, and living organism. Commercial honesty is a complexity of principles that are intended to apply to business but not to the personal conduct of the business subject.