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A New Philosophy of Society: Assemblage Theory and Social by Manuel De Landa

By Manuel De Landa

Manuel DeLanda is a individual author, artist and thinker.

In his new booklet, he bargains a desirable examine how the modern international is characterised via a rare social complexity. because such a lot social entities, from small groups to massive realms, may disappear altogether if human minds ceased to exist, Delanda proposes a unique method of social ontology that announces the autonomy of social entities from the conceptions now we have of them.

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A New Philosophy of Society: Assemblage Theory and Social Complexity

Manuel DeLanda is a special author, artist and thinker.

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Additional info for A New Philosophy of Society: Assemblage Theory and Social Complexity

Sample text

The third qualification relates to the question of the relevant scale at which a particular social process is to be explained. As I argued above, sometimes questions of relevance are settled through the concept of causal redundancy. But this does not imply that explanations will always involve a single spatial scale. The Napoleonic revolution in warfare - a revolution which transformed war from one conducted through relatively local battles of attrition to one based on battles of annihilation in which the entire resources of a nation were mobilized - is a good example of a process demanding a multiscaled explanation: it involved causal changes taking place at the urban and national scale (the French Revolution, which produced the first armies of motivated citizens instead 39 A NEW PHILOSOPHY OF SOCIETY of expensive mercenaries); causes and reasons at the organizational scale (the breaking-down of monolithic armies into autonomous divisions each with its own infantry, cavalry and artillery); and reasons and motives at the personal scale, since Napoleon's own strategic genius and charisma, amplified by his influential position in interpersonal networks, played a crucial catalytic role.

In the explanation of a concrete social process it may not be immediately clear whether the causal actors are the micro-components or the macro-whole. The ambiguity can be eliminated if there are many equivalent explanations of the process in question at the micro-level, for example, if a coalition between communities which was in fact created by the negotiations between a specific group of activists could have been created by negotiations among other alternative activists. 18 In the same way, a large organization may be said to be the relevant actor in the explanation of an interorganizational process if a substitution of the people occupying specific roles in its authority structure leaves the organizational policies and its daily routines intact.

Organizations exist in a wide range of scales, from a nuclear family of three to a transnational corporation employing half a million people. Families tend to be component parts of community networks, while some large organizations can contain a variety of networks as their parts, such as networks of friends or co-workers. Some interpersonal networks (such as professional networks) cut across organizations; others do not form part of any organization, and yet others come into being within large organizations and then function as component parts.

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