David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy 5:115-121 (2007)
In this paper I argue, contrary to the modern paradigm of rational choice theory in sociological theorising, that Dürkheim was correct to think that collectivistic notions are required if there is to be sui generis social science. However, Durkheim's anti-individualism must be naturalised to be compatible with modern monistic ontology. I argue that the required naturalisation is offered by the notion of humans as strongly social animals in general and the notion of collective intentionality in particular. I argue that such a collectivistic but ontologically naturalistic notion is (i) a fundamental building block of social reality, (ii) supported by empirical studies, (iii) required by theoretical analyses of social action dilemmas and, finally, (iv) capable of providing the key to the construction of a more humane world of the future.
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