chapter  12
16 Pages

Bureaucracy and Modernization

WithJohnson Harry M.

Max Weber regarded bureaucracy as more effective for certain tasks than earlier forms of organization and provided a classical “ideal type” description of it, he is one of the originators of negative stereotypes about “bureaucracy” and the modem world in general. Bureaucracy in the modem world is said to have become dull and inappropriately routinized. Closely related is the thesis that modem bureaucracy has stifled if not actually killed individuality and creativity. The graduate schools are certainly among the most “progressive” agencies in a modem society, with their emphasis on research of all kinds, notably in the sciences. The latter have varying approximations to modernity in some respects, while the relatively advanced societies on the whole exhibit closer approximations. Effect of modernization is to differentiate values more clearly from the three “lower” levels of social structure. The difference is important for full appreciation of Parsonsian theory but not for most readers who are mainly interested in “bureaucracy” and “modernization.”