martin riesebrodt 1948-2014
Martin Riesebrodt died a few days ago in Berlin. He was an emeritus professor at the University of Chicago and a very prominent scholar of religion and Max Weber. I was lucky to have him as an instructor in the graduate social theory class. He was friendly with students and is remembered well. What I took away from Martin was his view of Weber as a broad thinker with an uncanny ability to grapple with the interaction of culture and history. His best work is probably Pious Passion, which argued that fundamentalism is driven by a desire to reassert patriarchy. My best memory of Martin is when he joked about how the West Coast’s beautiful weather drove people to the beach and made it hard to have great California sociology!