Fully revised, with an updated bibliography and new, relevant illustrative examples based on work inspired by critical realism, this new edition of Explaining Society constitutes an up-to-date resource connecting methodology, theory, and empirical research. Including discussions of more recent scholarship in the field which connects critical realism with interdisciplinary research, this second edition also clarifies concepts – such as retroduction and retrodiction – so as to render them consistent with developments within critical realism, which are covered in a new chapter. An accessible account of the nature of society and social science, together with the methods used to study and explain social phenomena, Explaining Society will appeal to scholars of sociology, philosophy, and the social sciences more broadly.

chapter 1|16 pages


part I|52 pages

Introduction to critical realism

chapter 2|20 pages

Science and reality

chapter 3|31 pages

Conceptual abstraction and causality

part II|154 pages

Methodological implications