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Forthcoming articles
  1. J. A. Bell (forthcoming). Book Review: Can There Be a Philosophy of Archaeology? By William Harvey Krieger. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  2. Jørn Bjerre (forthcoming). A New Foundation for the Social Sciences? Searle's Misreading of Durkheim. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114525860.
    The aim of John Searle’s philosophy of society is to provide a foundation for the social sciences. Arguing that the study of social reality needs to be based on a philosophy of language, Searle claims that sociology has little to offer since no sociologist ever took language seriously. Attacking Durkheim head-on, Searle not only claims that Durkheim’s project differs from his own but also that Durkheim’s sociology has serious shortcomings. Opposing Searle, this paper argues that Durkheim’s account of social reality (...)
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  3. Marion Godman, Michiru Nagatsu & Mikko Salmela (forthcoming). The Social Motivation Hypothesis for Prosocial Behavior. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114530841.
    Existing economic models of prosociality have been rather silent in terms of proximate psychological mechanisms. We nevertheless identify the psychologically most informed accounts and offer a critical discussion of their hypotheses for the proximate psychological explanations. Based on convergent evidence from several fields of research, we argue that there nevertheless is a more plausible alternative proximate account available: the social motivation hypothesis. The hypothesis represents a more basic explanation of the appeal of prosocial behavior, which is in terms of anticipated (...)
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  4. Tobias Hansson Wahlberg (forthcoming). Elder-Vass on the Causal Power of Social Structures. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393113500213.
    In this review essay, I examine the central tenets of sociologist Dave Elder-Vass’s recent contribution to social ontology, as put forth in his book The Causal Power of Social Structures: Emergence, Structure and Agency. Elder-Vass takes issue with ontological individualists and maintains that social structures exist and have causal powers in their own right. I argue that he fails to establish his main theses: he shows neither that social structures have causal powers “in their own right” (in any sense of (...)
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  5. Tobias Hansson Wahlberg (forthcoming). Causally Redundant Social Objects: Rejoinder to Elder-Vass. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114521364.
    In Elder-Vass’s response to my critical discussion of his social ontology, it is maintained (1) that a social object is not identical with but is merely composed of its suitably interrelated parts, (2) that a social object is necessarily indistinguishable in terms of its causal capacities from its interrelated parts, and (3) that ontological individualism lacks an adequate ontological justification. In this reply, I argue that in view of (1) the so-called redescription principle defended by Elder-Vass ought to be reformulated (...)
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  6. L. Casini (forthcoming). Not-So-Minimal Models: Between Isolation and Imagination. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114532059.
    What can we learn from “minimal” economic models? I argue that learning from such models is not limited to conceptual explorations—which show how something could be the case—but may extend to explanations of real economic phenomena—which show how something is the case. A model may be minimal qua certain world-linking properties, and yet “not-so-minimal” qua learning, provided it is externally valid. This, in turn, depends on using the right principles for model building and not necessarily “isolating” principles. My argument is (...)
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  7. M. Graziano (forthcoming). Individual and Social Preferences: Defending the Agent's Perspective Rather Than the Theoretician's. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114539851.
    Standard economic theory usually analyzes the decisions made by individuals as a rational process in which each individual has sound and consistent preferences and makes decisions according to the principle of subjective expected utility maximization. Starting from the pioneering work of Herbert Simon and the research of cognitive psychologists Kahneman and Tversky, the contributions provided by cognitive-behavioral theory have repeatedly shown that real agents make choices in a way that differs systematically from standard theory, hence highlighting its limits. Rather than (...)
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  8. Joseph Agassi (forthcoming). Book Review: Paul Feyerabend: Ein Philosoph Aus Wien, Edited by F. Stadler and KR Fischer. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
  9. Bo Bengtsson & Nils Hertting (forthcoming). Generalization by Mechanism: Thin Rationality and Ideal-Type Analysis in Case Study Research. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393113506495.
    Drawing general inferences on the basis of single-case and small-n studies is often seen as problematic. This article suggests a logic of generalization based on thinly rationalistic social mechanisms. Ideal-type mechanisms can be derived from empirical observations in one case and, based on the assumption of thin rationality, used as a generalizing bridge to other contexts with similar actor constellations. Thus, the “portability” builds on expectations about similar mechanisms operating in similar contexts. We present the general logic behind such “rationalistic (...)
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  10. Mark Bevir (forthcoming). What Is Radical Historicism? Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114531374.
    This article responds to Stephen Turner’s discussion of my article, “Historicism and Critique.” I emphasize that radical historicism consists of substantive philosophical commitments. One commitment is to a historicized epistemology that presents objective knowledge as a product of a comparison between rival webs of belief. Another commitment is to a historical ontology that presents aggregate concepts in the social sciences as inherently pragmatic. These substantive commitments provide a plausible basis for various forms of critique. They lead to analyses of genealogical (...)
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  11. Mark Bevir (forthcoming). Historicism and Critique. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114531370.
    This paper argues that historicism can provide substantive philosophical grounds for critical theory and various modes of critique. Unlike the developmental historicism that dominated the nineteenth century, we start from a radical historicism tied to nominalism, contingency, and contestability. This radical historicism is compatible with a commitment to truth claims, including the truth of historicism and the truth of particular genealogies and other accounts of the world. Genealogy can be viewed as radical historicism in its critical guise, denaturalizing the ideas (...)
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  12. Hsiang-Ke Chao (forthcoming). Models and Credibility. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114531545.
    This article argues that the credibility of both theoretical and empirical models in economics is best understood through their connection with the empirical aspects of the real world. The discussion herein demonstrates that the similarity between the model and the real world is not enough to justify a theoretical model’s explanatory power. The best way to secure the model’s credibility is to prove the existence of representation theorems.
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  13. Daniel Diermeiq Chong, Jack Knight & Lany Rothenbe (forthcoming). 76 Philosophy of the Social Sciences/March 1996. Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
  14. Dionysis Christias (forthcoming). A Sellarsian Approach to the Normativism-Antinormativism Controversy. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114530786.
    In this article, it is argued that Sellars’ view of normativity is the key for a proper resolution of the debate between normativism and anti-normativism, as the latter is described in Turner’s recent book Explaining the Normative. Drawing on an early Sellarsian article (“A Semantical Solution to the Mind-Body Problem”), I suggest that both normativism and anti-normativism (including Turner’s brand of the latter) are ultimately unsatisfactory positions and for the same reason: due to their failure to draw a distinction between (...)
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  15. Dave Elder-Vass (forthcoming). Redescription, Reduction, and Emergence: A Response to Tobias Hansson Wahlberg. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393113515386.
    In response to Hansson Wahlberg, this paper argues, first, that he misunderstands the redescription principle developed in my book The Causal Power of Social Structures, and second, that his criticisms rest on an ontological individualism that is taken for granted but in fact lacks an adequate ontological justification of its own.
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  16. Dave Elder-Vass (forthcoming). Disassembling Actor-Network Theory. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114525858.
    One of the strikingly iconoclastic features of actor-network theory is its juxtaposition of the claim to be a realist perspective with denials that supposedly natural phenomena existed before scientists “made them up.” This paper explains and criticizes such arguments in the work of Bruno Latour. By combining referent and reference in the concept of assemblages, Latour provides a superficially viable way to reconcile these apparently incompatible claims. This paper will argue, however, that this conflation of referent and reference leads Latour’s (...)
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  17. Brian Fay (forthcoming). Phenomenology and Social Inquiry: From Consciousness to Culture and Critique. Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  18. Steve Fuller (forthcoming). Studies and the Philosophy of Social Sciences. Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
  19. Roberto Fumagalli (forthcoming). Neural Findings and Economic Models Why Brains Have Limited Relevance for Economics. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114530948.
    Proponents of neuroeconomics often argue that better knowledge of the human neural architecture enables economists to improve standard models of choice. In their view, these improvements provide compelling reasons to use neural findings in constructing and evaluating economic models. In a recent article, I criticized this view by pointing to the trade-offs between the modeling desiderata valued by neuroeconomists and other economists, respectively. The present article complements my earlier critique by focusing on three modeling desiderata that figure prominently in economic (...)
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  20. Andrew M. Koch (forthcoming). Book Review: The Century, by Alain Badiou. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  21. Inkeri Koskinen (forthcoming). Critical Subjects Participatory Research Needs to Make Room for Debate. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114525857.
    Participatory methods in anthropology and other fields of cultural research aim at turning informants into collaborators or co-authors. Researchers generally accept the idea of different knowledge systems and continue the practice of avoiding the critical appraisal of alien systems that is common in ethnography. However, if informants are to be treated as collaborators, or ideally as colleagues, they become effectively a part of the research community. Helen Longino has formulated criteria according to which the objectivity of research communities can be (...)
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  22. Tibor R. Machan (forthcoming). Book Review: James M. Buchanan, Why I, Too, Am Not a Conservative. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  23. Jamie Morgan (forthcoming). Seeing the Potential of Realism in Economics. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114530785.
    In this article, I clarify some of the key concepts and commitments of realist social ontology in economics. To do so, I make use of a recent critique of Lawson’s Reorienting Economics by Mohun and Veneziani. Their article provides a useful foil because responding to their critique allows us to emphasize that realism’s claims are more conditional and less controversial than one might otherwise anticipate. The basic claim is that ontology matters and that explicit recognition and consideration of ontological issues (...)
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  24. Lynn Hankinson Nelson (forthcoming). The Descent of Evolutionary Explanations: Darwinian Vestiges in the Social Sciences. Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  25. Olivier Ouzilou (forthcoming). Epistemic Context and Structural Explanation of Belief. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114531170.
    Social science studies often explain the emergence of collective beliefs by reference to factors that are supposed to be part of the social context. How do these macro-factors shape the beliefs of individuals? How can structural factors provide evidence supporting a given belief? In answering these questions, I propose a link connecting macro-factors and beliefs by introducing the notion of “evidential categorization.” I expect to show that our structural explanations of beliefs often contain an analysis of the socially diffused systems (...)
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  26. Piers Rawling (forthcoming). Decision Theory and Degree of Belief. Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  27. Sheldon Richmond (forthcoming). Book Review: Chasing Reality: Strife Over Realism, by Mario Bunge. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  28. Paul A. Roth (forthcoming). Beyond Understanding: The Career of the Concept of Understanding in the Human Sciences. Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  29. Javier González de Prado Salas & Jesús Zamora-Bonilla (forthcoming). Collective Actors Without Collective Minds: An Inferentialist Approach. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393113520397.
    We present an inferentialist account of collective rationality and intentionality, according to which beliefs and other intentional states are understood in terms of the normative statuses attributed to, and undertaken by, the participants of a discursive practice—namely, their discursive or practical commitments and entitlements. Although these statuses are instituted by the performances and attitudes of the agents, they are not identified with any physical or psychological entity, process or relation. Therefore, we argue that inferentialism allows us to talk of collective (...)
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  30. Raphael Sassower (forthcoming). Book Review: The Elgar Companion to Economics and Philosophy, Edited by John B. Davis, Alain Marciano, and Jochen Runde. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  31. Akos Sivado (forthcoming). The Shape of Things to Come? Reflections on the Ontological Turn in Anthropology. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114524830.
    Martin Paleček and Mark Risjord have recently put forward a critical evaluation of the ontological turn in anthropological theory. According to this philosophically informed theory of ethnographic practice, certain insights of twentieth-century analytic philosophy should play a part in the methodological debates concerning anthropological fieldwork: most importantly, the denial of representationalism and the acceptance of the extended mind thesis. In this paper, I will attempt to evaluate the advantages and potential drawbacks of ontological anthropology—arguing that to become a true alternative (...)
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  32. David Teira (forthcoming). Book Review: The Logic of Social Research, by Arthur L. Stinchcombe. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  33. Leonidas Tsilipakos (forthcoming). Theoretical Procedures and Elder-Vass's Critical Realist Ontology. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393112461055.
    This article scrutinizes some theoretical procedures prevalent in the philosophy of social science. These procedures are exemplified in Elder-Vass’s critical realism, which promises to place the social sciences on a sound ontological footing. The article focuses on the way that Elder-Vass’s general emergentist ontology is constituted and on the methods through which it is applied to society. It is contended that the ontology is not and could not be grounded in science and that its philosophical use distorts what it is (...)
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  34. Leonidas Tsilipakos (forthcoming). Realist Social Theory and Its Losing Battle with Concepts. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114525859.
    This article attempts to evidence the idea that progress in social theory is impeded by central theoretical procedures embodying a host of conceptual mistakes. The article focuses on realist theorizing, examining both early realist work on science and contemporary critical realism, and demonstrates how conceptual procedures employed therein lead to error and confusion. The standard use of these procedures entails, among other things, that social theoretical debates tend to remain irresolvable and that understanding of what it takes to demonstrate a (...)
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  35. Stephen Turner (forthcoming). Robert Merton and Dorothy Emmet: Deflated Functionalism and Structuralism. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114522516.
    Dorothy Emmet, in two books, one of which was based on extensive personal contact with Robert Merton and Columbia sociology, provides the closest thing we have to an authorized philosophical defense of Merton. It features a deflationary account of functionalism which dispenses with the idea of general teleological ends. What it replaces it with is an account of “structures” that have various consequences and that are maintained because, on Emmet’s account, of the mutual reinforcement of motives produced by the structure.
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  36. Stephen Turner (forthcoming). Not So Radical Historicism. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114531372.
    Mark Bevir raises the question of how genealogy, understood as a technique-based radical historicism, and the notion of the contingency of ideas, ground “critique.” His problem is to avoid the relativism of radical historicism in a way that allows for “critique” without appealing to non-radical historicist absolutisms of the kind that ground the notion of false consciousness. He does so by appealing to the notion of motivated irrationality, which he claims avoids the problem of relativism and the problems of “false (...)
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  37. Stephen P. Turner (forthcoming). Cause, the Persistence of Teleology, and the Origins of the Philosophy of Social Science. Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  38. Lars Udehn (forthcoming). The Methodology of Rational Choice. Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  39. Thomas Uebel (forthcoming). Twentieth-Century Philosophy of Social Science in the Analytic Tradition. Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  40. John Wettersten (forthcoming). Book Review: A Realist Philosophy of Social Science, by Peter T. Manicas. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences.
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  41. Julie Zahle (forthcoming). How to Circumscribe Individualist Explanations A Reply to Elder-Vass. Philosophy of the Social Sciences:0048393114530857.
    In “Redescription, Reduction, and Emergence: A Response to Tobias Hansson Wahlberg,” Elder-Vass takes the opportunity to reply to my criticism of his theory in “Holism, Emergence, and the Crucial Distinction.” In this response, I show how methodological individualists may respond to his argument against their position and I argue that Elder-Vass fails to provide reasons as to why his particular distinction between individualist and holist explanations should be adopted.
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