On convention

Synthese 107 (3):349 - 371 (1996)
Following the pioneering work of David Lewis, many philosophers believe that the rationale of following a convention consists in the fact that conventions are solutions to recurrent coordination problems. Margaret Gilbert has criticised this view, offering an alternative account of the nature of conventions and their normative aspect. In this paper I argue that Gilbert's criticism of Lewis and her alternative suggestions rest on serious misunderstandings. As between these two opposed views, Lewis's is closer to the truth, but I argue only with respect to one type of convention. There is another, important type of conventions, whose normativity does not consist in the solution of coordination problems. The validity of conventions constituting (what I call) autonomous practices can only be derived from the values inherent in the practices they constitute and those values cannot be specified independently of the conventions themselves
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DOI 10.1007/BF00413841
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References found in this work BETA
Convention: A Philosophical Study.David Lewis - 1969 - Harvard University Press.
Meaning.Stephen R. Schiffer - 1972 - Oxford, Clarendon Press.
Languages and Language.David Lewis - 1975 - In Keith Gunderson (ed.), Minnesota Studies in the Philosophy of Science. University of Minnesota Press. pp. 3-35.
The Emergence of Norms.Lanning Sowden & Edna Ullmann-Margalit - 1981 - Philosophical Quarterly 31 (122):82.

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Citations of this work BETA
Norms and Conventions.Nicholas Southwood & Lina Eriksson - 2011 - Philosophical Explorations 14 (2):195 - 217.
Deep Conventions.Andrei Marmor - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 74 (3):586-610.
Salience Reasoning.Gerald J. Postema - 2008 - Topoi 27 (1-2):41-55.

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