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  1. Peter Winch and the Autonomy of the Social Sciences.Jonas Ahlskog - 2022 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 52 (3):150-174.
    Philosophy of the Social Sciences, Volume 52, Issue 3, Page 150-174, June 2022. This article offers a reassessment of the main import of Peter Winch’s philosophy of the social sciences. Critics argue that Winch presented a flawed methodology for the social sciences, while his supporters deny that Winch’s work is about methodology at all. Contrary to both, the author argues that Winch deals with fundamental questions about methodology, and that there is something substantial to learn from his account. Winch engages (...)
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  • Ontological Anti-Foundationalism in Sociology.Yannis Trophardy - 2024 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 54 (2):151-167.
    Social ontology studies the nature and properties of social reality while social metaontology examines the relationship between ontology and the social sciences, which is often treated as a normative question. However, social sciences themselves contain ontological theses, raising the descriptive question of how these internal ontologies relate to the rest of the social sciences. This paper argues that important parts of sociology have an anti-foundationalist metaontology. This descriptive claim is used to build a normative argument against foundationalism and is supported (...)
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  • Cultural Evolutionary Theory and the Significance of the Biology-Culture Analogy.Shaun Stanley - 2020 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 51 (2):193-214.
    Throughout the literature on Cultural Evolutionary Theory attention is drawn to the existence and significance of an analogy between biological phenomena and socio-cultural phenomena. Mesoudi seems to argue that it is the accuracy of the analogy, and the magnitude of accurate instances of this analogy at work, which provides warrant for an evolutionary approach to the study of socio-cultural phenomena, and, thus, for CET. An implication of this is that if there is evidence to suggest that the analogy is not (...)
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  • B. Epstein’s Social Ontology.Andrey M. Orekhov - 2022 - RUDN Journal of Philosophy 26 (3):572-581.
    The article realizes the analysis of B. Epstein’s social ontology. Social ontology is teaching on basic principles of constructing of social reality, founded on interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary strategies of investigations of the social world. There are five leading programs in contemporary social ontology: “CIIF-program” of J. Searle, “Cambridge program” of T. Lawson, “Tufts program” of B. Epstein, “critical realism” and “the other institutionalism”. “Tufts program” is one from them. Social ontology tries to make progress on clarifying all of these in (...)
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  • Social Ontology and the Identification of Generic Performativity in Social Science: A Case of Performative Financialization.Noriaki Okamoto - 2023 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 53 (4):303-326.
    Although social ontology (SO) has attracted the attention of scholars in various disciplines, how it is applied to social scientific studies is still under-researched. To tackle this issue, this paper initially considers major streams of research on SO. It then argues that one of the aims of SO in the social sciences is to identify the rhetorical expression of social dynamism. To support this argument, the present study introduces a perspective of performativity and proposes that generic performativity should be identified (...)
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  • Ontological Investigations of a Pragmatic Kind? A Reply to Lauer.Simon Lohse - 2020 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 51 (1):3-12.
    This paper is a reply to Richard Lauer’s “Is Social Ontology Prior to Social Scientific Methodology?” (2019) and an attempt to contribute to the meta-social ontological discourse more broadly. In the first part, I will give a rough sketch of Lauer’s general project and confront his pragmatist approach with a fundamental problem. The second part of my reply will provide a solution for this problem rooted in a philosophy of the social sciences in practice.
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  • Social Ontology De-dramatized.Daniel Little - 2021 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 51 (1):13-23.
    The article responds to Richard Lauer’s (2019) “Is Social Ontology Prior to Social Scientific Methodology?” The article concurs that “social ontology matters” for the conduct of research and theory in social science. It argues, however, that neither of the interpretations of the status of social ontology offered by Lauer is satisfactory (either apriori philosophical realism or pragmatist anti-realism). The article argues for a naturalized, fallibilist, and realist interpretation of the claims of social ontology and presents the field of social ontology (...)
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  • Instrumentalizing and Naturalizing Social Ontology: Replies to Lohse and Little.Richard Lauer - 2021 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 51 (1):24-39.
    This article addresses Simon Lohse’s and Daniel Little’s responses to my article “Is Social Ontology Prior to Social Scientific Methodology?.” In that article, I present a pragmatic and deflationary view of the priority of social ontology to social science methodology where social ontology is valued for its ability to promote empirical success and not because it yields knowledge of what furnishes the social world. First, in response to Lohse, I argue that my view is compatible with a role for ontological (...)
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  • Rescuing Ontological Individualism.Francesco Guala - 2022 - Philosophy of Science 89 (3):471-485.
    Standard defenses of ontological individualism are challenged by arguments that exploit the dependence of social facts on material facts—that is, facts that are not about human individuals. In this article, I discuss Brian Epstein’s “materialism” in The Ant Trap: granting Epstein’s strict definition of individualism, I show that his arguments depend crucially on a generous conception of social properties and social facts. Individualists, however, are only committed to the claim that projectible properties are individualistically realized, and materialists have not undermined (...)
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  • How Can Theories Represent Social Phenomena?Jan A. Fuhse - 2022 - Sociological Theory 40 (2):99-123.
    Discussions in sociological theory often focus on ontological questions on the nature of social reality. Against the underlying epistemological realism, I argue for a constructivist notion of theory: Theories are webs of concepts that we use to guide empirical observations and to make sense of them. We cannot know the real features of the social world, only what our theoretical perspectives make us see. Theories therefore represent social phenomena by highlighting certain features and relating them in a logical system. In (...)
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