Analyse & Kritik 15 (2):168-191 (1993)

One aspect of the Micro-Macro-Problem is the analysis of the principles of composition and decomposition. Since these principles play a considerable role in everyday life whenever people identify parts of large social units, they can be derived by way of reconstruction from everyday knowledge. On this basis a definition of micro-macro-relations is developed. According to this definition there are empirical and conceptual relations between the macro-phenomenon and its constituent parts, although the micro-phenomena are also independent entities in their own right. Two different forms of ascription of macro-attributes are distinguished and the limits of 'upward'-composition and 'downward'-decomposition are discussed. Finally, consequences of this perspective are presented concerning the explanation of social facts
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DOI 10.1515/auk-1993-0207
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