Searle vs. Conte on Constitutive Rules

In Paolo Di Lucia & Edoardo Fittipaldi (eds.), Revisiting Searle on Deriving “Ought” From “Is”. Springer Verlag. pp. 157-176 (2021)
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Abstract

Inextricably bound up with the philosophy of John Searle is, famously among philosophers, the concept of constitutive rules. Less well known, however, is that starting in the 1970s, a conversation on this topic emerged in Italian legal philosophy, reaching a depth and complexity hardly matched anywhere else in the world. This is due chiefly to the work of Gaetano Carcaterra and Amedeo G. Conte. This chapter moves that conversation forward by connecting these different research lines: It shows how the evolution of Searle’s concept of a constitutive rule can ground a critique of Conte’s own concept of a constitutive rule, and how, conversely, those developments in Searle’s ideas are consistent with some sound critiques Conte aimed at Searle’s original thinking on constitutive rules.

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Corrado Roversi
Università degli Studi di Bologna

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