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International Studies in Phenomenology and Philosophy

Journal | Issue | Article

Supervenience and the social world

Daniel Little

pp. 125-145


The article provides an exposition of the concept of supervenience in application to the social world. It is pointed out that the issue of supervenience is particularly important in the social sciences, ranging from macro to meso to micro, individual to social. The paper considers the topics of emergence and reduction, and considers whether the concept of supervenience permits us to steer between the two. The paper closes with a discussion of the idea of relative explanatory autonomy as a preferable conception of the relations across levels in the human sciences.

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