From the analysis and editing of literature on the subject of "social disadvantage", there arose the intention to examine the multifaceted phenomena related to the problem of social disadvantage, taking a multidimensional approach. The intention was not just to gain an accurate understanding of the current welfare-policy-related situation of socially disadvantaged people by means of empirical investigations, but to bundle the various theoretical approaches to this subject. The overall objective of the paper is to provide a theoretical basis for unemployment's causes, mechanisms and consequences, as well as for analysis of the risks, so as to provide access to the problem of social inequality and social disadvantage. This text is subdivided into four parts and is intended as a compact and comprehensive overview of the various theoretical approaches which have been developed in the context of social disadvantage. The theoretical framework depicted in this text not only encompasses sociological discourses, but also strives to incorporate theoretical constructs from pedagogy, economics and philosophy into the discourse. This submission is a theoretical paper which refers to diverse empirical facts. This empiricism is the result of EQUAL project support from the Chair for Social and Professional Rehabilitation at the University of Magdeburg, in which the author was directly involved. The EQUAL project support induced the search for a mode of explanation for the causes of the psychological problems and the personal stability / instabilities of many East German unemployed.