Nonideal Social Ontology: The Power View

New York, NY: Oxford University Press (2023)
  Copy   BIBTEX


This book argues for the use of nonideal theory in social ontology. The central claim is that a paradigm shift is underway in contemporary social ontology, from ideal to nonideal, and that this shift should be fully followed through. To develop and defend this central claim, the first step is to show that the key questions and central dividing lines within contemporary social ontology can be fruitfully reconstructed as a clash between two worlds, referred to as ideal and nonideal social ontology. Ideal social ontology is characterized by consensus and cooperation, while nonideal social ontology is characterized by conflict and contestation. The second step is to show that, when taken together, objections to the standard model of ideal social ontology (the dominant version of ideal social ontology) imply that this model needs to be given up in favor of nonideal social ontology. In other words, we should look to nonideal rather than ideal social ontology for core concepts. The third step is to offer a positive account, called the power view, of nonideal social ontology. This account places the concept of social power at the core of a general theory of the social world and replaces the flat and narrow conception of power in ideal social ontology with a richer and more extensive conception. In addition, it rectifies a shortcoming in nonideal social ontology by attending to class, which has been notably and oddly overlooked in the literature.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 92,197

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Critical Theory and Processual Social Ontology.Emmanuel Renault - 2016 - Journal of Social Ontology 2 (1):17–32.
Just What is Social Ontology?Baker Lynne Rudder - 2019 - Journal of Social Ontology 5 (1):1-12.
Institutions, Ideology, and Nonideal Social Ontology.Johan Brännmark - 2019 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 49 (2):137-159.
Précis of Naturalizing Critical Realist Social Ontology.Tuukka Kaidesoja - 2015 - Journal of Social Ontology 1 (2):321–326.
Concrete Ontology: Comments on Lauer, Little, and Lohse.Harold Kincaid - 2021 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 51 (1):40-47.
Social Ontology De-dramatized.Daniel Little - 2021 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 51 (1):13-23.
Motivating a Pragmatic Approach to Naturalized Social Ontology.Richard Lauer - 2022 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 53 (4):403–419.


Added to PP

65 (#250,691)

6 months
21 (#127,843)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Åsa Burman
Stockholm University

Citations of this work

Critical social ontology.Kevin Richardson - 2023 - Synthese 201 (6):1-19.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references