Abstract
This paper outlines a realist approach to the social ontology of discourse. It seeks to synthesise some elements of the approach to discourse found in the early work of Michel Foucault with a critical realist understanding of the causal power of social structures. It will argue that discursive structures can be causally significant when they are normatively endorsed and enforced by specific groups of people; that it is not discourse as such but these groups—discursive circles—that are causally effective; and that such an account allows us to reconcile the role of discourse with that of the subject
Keywords Foucault  social ontology  critical realism  discourse  norm circles
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DOI 10.1111/j.1468-5914.2010.00449.x
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References found in this work BETA

The Archaeology of Knowledge.Michel Foucault - 1970 - Social Science Information 9 (1):175-185.
Michel Foucault: Beyond Structuralism and Hermeneutics.Ian Hacking - 1985 - Journal of Philosophy 82 (5):273-277.

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Citations of this work BETA

Integrating Archer and Foucault.Nick Hardy - 2019 - Journal of Critical Realism 18 (1):1-17.
Debate: Seven Ways to Be A Realist About Language.Dave Elder-Vass - 2014 - Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 44 (3):249-267.

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