Definition of Protestant ethic noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary


Protestant ethic

BrE BrE//ˌprɒtɪstənt ˈeθɪk//
; NAmE NAmE//ˌprɑːtɪstənt ˈeθɪk//
(also Protestant work ethic) [singular]
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the idea that a person has a duty to work hard and spend their time and money in a careful, responsible way, sometimes thought to be typical of Protestants Word Origintranslating German die protestantische Ethik, coined (1904) by the economist Max Weber in his thesis on the relationship between the teachings of Calvin and the rise of capitalism.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: Protestant ethic