Solitary rule-following

Philosophy 67 (261):285-306 (1992)
Can a rule be followed by one person who has lived all his life in as complete isolation from other human beings as is consistent with his mere physical survival? This question divides philosophers as sharply today as it did over thirty years ago when, prompted by their reading of Wittgenstein, they first asked it. My aim here is to suggest a way of reconciling the two opposing sides in the current debate. I also hope to explain why it was that Wittgenstein did not concern himself with the complexities I am about to discuss, which none the less are, I believe, at the root of the difficulties we experience when we try to understand what Wittgenstein said about following a rule and to think clearly about this question
Keywords Custom  Law  Rule  Social Philosophy  Wittgenstein
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1017/S0031819100040420
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 16,667
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

27 ( #114,246 of 1,726,249 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #369,877 of 1,726,249 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.