© 2013

The Background of Social Reality

Selected Contributions from the Inaugural Meeting of ENSO

  • Michael Schmitz
  • Beatrice Kobow
  • Hans Bernhard Schmid

Part of the Studies in the Philosophy of Sociality book series (SIPS, volume 1)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-vi
  2. The Ontology of Groups: Their Minds, Intentions, Actions and Interactions

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 11-11
    2. Hans Bernhard Schmid
      Pages 37-55
    3. Kendy Hess
      Pages 57-75
    4. Beatrice Kobow
      Pages 77-90
    5. Antonella Carassa, Marco Colombetti
      Pages 91-104
  3. Into the Background: Capacities and Cases

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 105-105
    2. Michael Schmitz
      Pages 107-125
    3. Titus Stahl
      Pages 127-146
  4. Social Reality: Its Essence and Constitution

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 183-183
    2. Emanuele Bottazzi, Roberta Ferrario
      Pages 201-215

About this book


This volume aims at giving the reader an overview over the most recent theoretical and methodological findings in a new and rapidly evolving area of current theory of society: social ontology. This book brings together philosophical, sociological and psychological approaches and advances the theory towards a solution of contemporary problems of society, such as the integration of cultures, the nature of constitutive rules, and the actions of institutional actors. It focuses on the question of the background of action in society and illuminates one of the most controversial, cross-disciplinary questions of the field while providing insight into the ontological structure of groups as agents.

This volume offers an interesting and important contribution to the debate as it does well in bridging the gap between the analytical and the continental tradition in social philosophy. In addition, this volume expands the reach and depth of the philosophy of sociality by relating it to philosophical ideas from the late 19th and early 20th centuries and to key thinkers such as Husserl, Heidegger, and Bourdieu.

The contributors include internationally renowned scholars as well as a highly selected set of younger scholars whose work is at the cutting edge of their field. Scholarly, yet accessible, this book is an essential resource for researchers across the social sciences. ​


Akrasia Collective Intentionality Group Intentions Methodological Individualism Social Ontology Social Rules

Editors and affiliations

  • Michael Schmitz
    • 1
  • Beatrice Kobow
    • 2
  • Hans Bernhard Schmid
    • 3
  1. 1.Institut für PhilosophieUniversität WienWienAustria
  2. 2., Institut fur PhilosophieUniversität LeipzigLeipzigGermany
  3. 3.Institut für PhilosophieUniversität WienWienAustria

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title The Background of Social Reality
  • Book Subtitle Selected Contributions from the Inaugural Meeting of ENSO
  • Editors Michael Schmitz
    Beatrice Kobow
    Hans Bernhard Schmid
  • Series Title Studies in the Philosophy of Sociality
  • Series Abbreviated Title Studies in the Philosophy of Sociality
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Humanities, Social Sciences and Law Philosophy and Religion (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-94-007-5599-4
  • Softcover ISBN 978-94-007-9438-2
  • eBook ISBN 978-94-007-5600-7
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages VI, 251
  • Number of Illustrations 0 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Philosophy, general
    Sociology, general
    Law and Psychology
  • Buy this book on publisher's site


“The book might be an interesting companion to social ontology, not only for professional philosophers or sociologists but also for all who are interested in a variety of aspects of the social. It presents contributions of the younger generation interested in the philosophy of society, in most cases grown in the tradition of collective intentionality, and from the spatial point of view, a significant part of contributors come from European (partially continental) traditions, which may significantly complement analytic/atlantic tradition.” (Rafał Paweł Wierzchosławski, Anthropos, Vol. 111, 2016)