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Abstract

In the last two decades, social theory in German-language sociology saw the rise of a number of “umbrella enterprises” such as analytical sociology, relational sociology, or practice theory that are not part of universalistic grand theories but extract basic assumptions about the structure of social reality from a plurality of approaches and combine them into competing integrative programs. The present article outlines the most significant of these umbrella enterprises and key aspects that they have defined in the discussion on social theory in German-speaking countries. Moreover, it deals with the question of how the larger of these enterprises in particular manage to present themselves as uniform approaches despite their many internal differences.

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