It is a commonplace within philosophy that the ontology of institutions can be captured in terms of constitutive rules. What exactly such rules are, however, is not well understood. They are usually contrasted to regulative rules: constitutive rules (such as the rules of chess) make institutional actions possible, whereas regulative rules (such as the rules of etiquette) pertain to actions that can be performed independently of such rules. Some, however, maintain that the (...) distinction between regulative and constitutive rules is merely a linguistic one. In this paper I present the status account of constitutive rules in order to address this criticism. According to the status account constitutive rules pertain to institutional statuses and statuses are to be understood in terms of status rules. Status rules concern the enabling and constraining roles of institutions, and constitutive rules specify the preconditions that have to be met in order for them to play these roles. Even though I end up endorsing the claim that the distinction mentioned is a linguistic one, I go on to argue that there is an underlying reality that constitutive rules serve to make apparent. (shrink)
The book from which these sections are excerpted is concerned with the prospects for assimilating the study of human intelligence and its products to the natural sciences through the investigation of cognitive structures, understood as systems of rules and representations that can be regarded as These mental structui′es serve as the vehicles for the exercise of various capacities. They develop in the mind on the basis of an innate endowment that permits the growth of rich and highly articulated structures (...) along an intrinsically determined course under the triggering and partially shaping effect of experience, which fixes parameters in an intricate system of predetermined form. It is argued that the mind is modular in character, with a diversity of cognitive structures, each with its specific properties arid principles. Knowledge of language, of the behavior of objects, and much else crucially involves these mental structures, and is thus not characterizable in terms of capacities, dispositions, or practical abilities, nor is it necessarily grounded in experience in the standard sense of this term. (shrink)
Sentimental Rules is an ambitious and highly interdisciplinary work, which proposes and defends a new theory about the nature and evolution of moral judgment. In it, philosopher Shaun Nichols develops the theory that emotions play a critical role in both the psychological and the cultural underpinnings of basic moral judgment. Nichols argues that our norms prohibiting the harming of others are fundamentally associated with our emotional responses to those harms, and that such 'sentimental rules' enjoy an advantage in (...) cultural evolution, which partly explains the success of certain moral norms. This has sweeping and exciting implications for philosophical ethics. Nichols builds on an explosion of recent intriguing experimental work in psychology on our capacity for moral judgment and shows how this empirical work has broad import for enduring philosophical problems. The result is an account that illuminates fundamental questions about the character of moral emotions and the role of sentiment and reason in how we make our moral judgments. This work should appeal widely across philosophy and the other disciplines that comprise cognitive science. (shrink)
The book from which these sections are excerpted is concerned with the prospects for assimilating the study of human intelligence and its products to the natural sciences through the investigation of cognitive structures, understood as systems of rules and representations that can be regarded as “mental organs.” These mental structui′es serve as the vehicles for the exercise of various capacities. They develop in the mind on the basis of an innate endowment that permits the growth of rich and highly (...) articulated structures along an intrinsically determined course under the triggering and partially shaping effect of experience, which fixes parameters in an intricate system of predetermined form. It is argued that the mind is modular in character, with a diversity of cognitive structures, each with its specific properties arid principles. Knowledge of language, of the behavior of objects, and much else crucially involves these mental structures, and is thus not characterizable in terms of capacities, dispositions, or practical abilities, nor is it necessarily grounded in experience in the standard sense of this term.Various types of knowledge and modes of knowledge acquisition are discussed in these terms. Some of the properties of the language faculty are investigated. The basic cognitive relation is “knowing a grammar”; knowledge of language is derivative and, correspondingly, raises further problems. Language as commonly understood is not a unitary phenomenon but involves a number of interacting systems: the “computational” system of grammar, which provides the representations of sound and meaning that permit a rich range of expressive potential, is distinct from a conceptual system with its own properties; knowledge of language must be distinguished from knowledge of how to use a language; and the various systems that enter into the knowledge and use of language must be further analyzed into their specific subcomponents. (shrink)
Simon Blackburn puts forward a compelling original philosophy of human motivation and morality. He maintains that we cannot get clear about ethics until we get clear about human nature. So these are the sorts of questions he addresses: Why do we behave as we do? Can we improve? Is our ethics at war with our passions, or is it an upshot of those passions? Blackburn seeks the answers in an exploration of guilt, shame, disgust, and other moral emotions; he draws (...) also on game theory and cognitive science in his account of the structures of human motivation. Many philosophers have wanted a naturalistic ethics a theory that integrates our understanding of human morality with the rest of our understanding of the world we live in. What is special about Blackburn's naturalistic ethics is that it does not debunk the ethical by reducing it to the non-ethical. At the same time he banishes the spectres of scepticism and relativism that have haunted recent moral philosophy. Ruling Passions sets ethics in the context of human nature: it offers a solution to the puzzle of how ethics can maintain its authority even though it is rooted in the very emotions and motivations that it exists to control. (shrink)
I. Recent years have witnessed a great resurgence of interest in the writings of the later Wittgenstein, especially with those passages roughly, Philosophical Investigations p)I 38 Ã¢â¬â 242 and Remarks on the Foundations of mathematics, section VI that are concerned with the topic of rules. Much of the credit for all this excitement, unparalleled since the heyday of Wittgenstein scholarship in the early IIJ6os, must go to Saul Kripke's I4rittgenstein on Rules and Private Language. It is easy to (...) explain why. To begin with, the dialectic Kripke uncovered from Wittgenstein's.. (shrink)
As employees continue to lie, cheat, and steal from their employers, researchers have tried to help managers understand and possibly predict such deviant behavior. This study considers the specific employee misconduct of ethical rule breaking. Hirschi (1969) suggested that deviant behavior can be better understood by social bonding theory. The social bonding model includes four elements; attachment, commitment, involvement, and belief. It is proposed that Hirschi's social bonding theory can be used to understand ethical rule breaking by employees. Using a (...) sample of 200 employees, the results indicate that the social bonding elements of attachment and involvement can be used to better understand the reported likelihood of ethical rule breaking of employees. Recommendations for better applying the social bonding model to ethical rule breaking are suggested. (shrink)
This paper contains a brief overview of the area of admissible rules with an emphasis on results about intermediate and modal propositional logics. No proofs are given but many references to the literature are provided.
"[W]e must focus on what legalism, per se, means, and then ask why is it a good thing to have. Not less importantly, however, we must also realize that legalism can be excessive. Even if the rule of law is a good thing, too much of it may be bad. So the challenge for a theory of the rule of law is to articulate what the rule of law is, why is it good, and to what extent." "[T]he essense of (...) the ideal of the rule of law is that people ought to be governed by law. This general ideal has at least two main components. First, it requires that governments, namely, de facto political authorities, should rule, that is, guide their subjects' conduct, by law. Second, it requires that the law by which governments purport to rule should be such that it can actually guide human conduct." "The idea that governments should rule by law must be premised on the assumption that rule by law, regardless of the laws' specific content, is to be preferred to governance by other means of social control. And this immediately brings us to the second component of the rule of law, namely, that the law must be such that it can actually guide human conduct, and the further assumption that these necessary features of law embody certain virtues. In other words, unless we can first articulate what is unique about legal means of social control, and explain why those features promote certain goods, we cannot ground the idea that governments should rule by law." Discusses ways, following mainly Fuller, one can fail to make law. Notes that these are functional goods for the regulation of human behavior. They may have a connection to other things we value. We should not assume, though, that greater instantiation of these ideals is always better - sometimes ideals conflict such that more of one means less of another and "because such values, on their own grounds, set only a rough standard wherby gross deviations from it would be wrong." "Compliance with the generality-relevance principle is crucially important in safeguarding against such unjustified favoritism since it requires that the norm's subjects be those who qualify as such only on the basis of the reasons for enacting the norm in the first place." Though, we must recognize teh possibility of bad law in the sense of unjust discrimination. "It is part of the concept of law that the law purports to affect human behavior by introducing new norms and changing old ones. The concept of a norm and conduct-guidance by norms is an essential aspect of what the law is. Norms, as such, necessarily purport to provide reasons for action. A norm cannot provide a reason for action, however, unless its subjets are aware of the norm and regard it as a reason for action." Justifies some retroactivity in terms of the need for flexibility in any functioning legal system. "Legal positivism can accept the claim that law is, by its very nature or its essential functions in society, something good that deserves our moral appreciation. Nor is legal positivism forced to deny the plausible claim that wherever law exists, it must have a great many prescriptions which coincide with morality. There is probably a considerable overlap, and perhaps necessarily so, between the actual content of law and morality.". (shrink)
The legal regime regulating cross-border investment gives key rights to foreign investors and places significant duties on states hosting that investment. It also raises distinctive moral questions due to its potential to constrain a state’s ability to manage its economy and protect its people. Yet international investment law remains virtually untouched as a subject of philosophical inquiry. The questions of international political morality surrounding investment rules can be mapped through the lens of two critiques of the law – that (...) it systemically takes advantage of the global South and that it constrains the policy choices of states hosting investment. Each critique contains certain moral and empirical assumptions that deserve further attention. The distributive justice implications of international investment rules are also relevant to scholars of global distributive justice. The aim of the analysis is to develop an interdisciplinary agenda – among law, philosophy, and social science – for inquiry into the justice of investment law and reform of its unjust elements. (shrink)
Is there a universal set of rules for discovering and testing scientific hypotheses? Since the birth of modern science, philosophers, scientists, and other thinkers have wrestled with this fundamental question of scientific practice. Efforts to devise rigorous methods for obtaining scientific knowledge include the twenty-one rules Descartes proposed in his Rules for the Direction of the Mind and the four rules of reasoning that begin the third book of Newton's Principia , and continue today in debates (...) over the very possibility of such rules. Bringing together key primary sources spanning almost four centuries, Science Rules introduces readers to scientific methods that have played a prominent role in the history of scientific practice. Editor Peter Achinstein includes works by scientists and philosophers of science to offer a new perspective on the nature of scientific reasoning. For each of the methods discussed, he presents the original formulation of the method selections written by a proponent of the method together with an application to a particular scientific example and a critical analysis of the method that draws on historical and contemporary sources. The methods included in this volume are Cartesian rationalism with an application to Descartes' laws of motion Newton's inductivism and the law of gravity two versions of hypothetico-deductivism -- those of William Whewell and Karl Popper -- and the nineteenth-century wave theory of light Paul Feyerabend's principle of proliferation and Thomas Kuhn's views on scientific values, both of which deny that there are universal rules of method, with an application to Galileo's tower argument. Included also is a famous nineteenth-century debate about scientific reasoning between the hypothetico-deductivist William Whewell and the inductivist John Stuart Mill and an account of the realism-antirealism dispute about unobservables in science, with a consideration of Perrin's argument for the existence of molecules in the early twentieth century. (shrink)
Ruling Passion is the only book-length study of tyranny, statesmanship, and civic virtue in three major Platonic dialogues, the Georgias, the Symposium, and the Republic. It is also the first extended interpretation of eros as the key to Plato's understanding of both the depths of human vice and the heights of human aspirations for virtue and happiness. Through his detailed commentary and eloquent insights on the three dialogues, Waller Newell demonstrates how, for Plato, tyranny is a misguided longing for erotic (...) satisfaction that can be corrected by the education of eros toward the proper objects of its pleasure: civic virtue and philosophy. (shrink)
David Bloor's challenging new evaluation of Wittgenstein's account of rules and rule-following brings together the rare combination of philosophical and sociological viewpoints. Wittgenstein enigmatically claimed that the way we follow rules is an "institution" without ever explaining what he meant by this term. Wittgenstein's contribution to the debate has since been subject to sharply opposed interpretations by "collectivist" and "individualist" readings by philosophers; in the light of this controversy, Bloor argues convincingly for a collectivist, sociological understanding of Wittgenstein's (...) later work. Accessible and simply written, this book provides the first consistent sociological reading of Wittgenstein's work for many years. (shrink)
The rule-following debate, in its concern with the metaphysics and epistemology of linguistic meaning and mental content, goes to the heart of the most fundamental questions of contemporary philosophy of mind and language. This volume gathers together the most important contributions to the topic, including papers by Simon Blackburn, Paul Boghossian, Graeme Forbes, Warren Goldfarb, Paul Horwich, John McDowell, Colin McGinn, Ruth Millikan, Philip Pettit, George Wilson, and José Zalabardo. This debate has centred on Saul Kripke's reading of the rule-following (...) sections in Wittgenstein and his consequent posing of a "sceptical paradox" that threatens our every day notions of linguistic meaning and mental content. These essays are attempts to respond to this challenge and represent some of the most important work in contemporary theory of meaning. They examine the notion of meaning; whether it is possible to find a suitable meaning-constituting fact from our previous behaviour or mental histories; objections to, and defenses of, dispositional accounts of meaning; the plausibility of non-factualism about meaning; our attempts to develop non-reductionist accounts of meaning; and the sources of the normativity which attaches to meaning, such as the linguistic practice of the community or the dispositions of the individual. With an introductory essay and a comprehensive guide to further reading the book is an excellent resource for courses in philosophy of mind, philosophy of language, Wittgenstein, and metaphysics, as well as for all philosophers, linguists, and cognitive scientists with interests in these areas. Contributors include Simon Blackburn, Paul Boghossian, Graeme Forbes, Warren Goldfarb, Paul Horwich, John McDowell, Colin McGinn, Alexander Miller, Ruth Garrett Millikan, Philip Pettit, George. M. Wilson, Crispin Wright, and José L. Zalabardo. (shrink)
Ruling Passions is about human nature. It is an invitation to see human nature a certain way. It defends this way of looking at ourselves against competitors, including rational choice theory, modern Kantianism, various applications of evolutionary psychology, views that enchant our natures, and those that disenchant them in the direction of relativism or nihilism. It is a story centred upon a view of human ethical nature, which it places amongst other facets of human nature, as just one of the (...) elements which give us the manifold objects of our concerns and cares. (shrink)
This paper describes and defends a novel and distinctively egalitarian conception of the rule of law. Official behavior is to be governed by preexisting, public rules that do not draw irrelevant distinctions between the subjects of law. If these demands are satisfied, a state achieves vertical equality between officials and ordinary people and horizontal legal equality among ordinary people.
This is a short, and therefore necessarily very incomplete discussion of one of the great questions of modern philosophy. I return to a station at which an interpretative train of thought of mine came to a halt in a paper written almost 20 years ago, about Wittgenstein and Chomsky, hoping to advance a little bit further down the track. The rule-following passages in the Investigations and Remarks on the Foundations of Mathematics in fact raise a number of distinct issues about (...)rules, meaning, objectivity, and reasons, whose conflation is encouraged by the standard caption, "the Rule-following Considerations". So, let me begin by explaining my focus here. (shrink)
Sport, Rules and Values presents a philosophical perspective on some issues concerning the character of sport. Central questions for the text are motivated from real life sporting examples as described in newspaper reports. For instance, the (supposed) subjectivity of umpiring decisions is explored via an examination of the judging ice-skating at the Salt Lake City Olympic Games of 2002. Throughout, the presentation is rich in concrete cases from sporting situations, including baseball, football, and soccer. While granting the constitutive nature (...) of the rules of sport, discussion focuses on three broad uses commonly urged for rules: in defining sport; in judging or assessing sport (as deployed by judges or umpires); and in characterizing the value of sport, especially if that value is regarded as moral value. In general, McFee rejects a conception of the determinacy of rules as possible within sport, and a parallel picture of the determinacy assumed to be required by philosophy. (shrink)
Many philosophers think that games like chess, languages like English, and speech acts like assertion are constituted by rules. Lots of others disagree. To argue over this productively, it would be first useful to know what it would be for these things to be rule-constituted. Searle famously claimed in Speech Acts that rules constitute things in the sense that they make possible the performance of actions related to those things (Searle 1969). On this view, rules constitute games, (...) languages, and speech acts in the sense that they make possible playing them, speaking them and performing them. This raises the question what it is to perform rule-constituted actions (e. g. play, speak, assert) and the question what makes constitutive rules distinctive such that only they make possible the performance of new actions (e. g. playing). In this paper I will criticize Searle’s answers to these questions. However, my main aim is to develop a better view, explain how it works in the case of each of games, language, and assertion and illustrate its appeal by showing how it enables rule-based views of these things to respond to various objections. (shrink)
This paper discusses the prospects of a dispositional solution to the Kripke–Wittgenstein rule-following puzzle. Recent attempts to employ dispositional approaches to this puzzle have appealed to the ideas of finks and antidotes—interfering dispositions and conditions—to explain why the rule-following disposition is not always manifested. We argue that this approach fails: agents cannot be supposed to have straightforward dispositions to follow a rule which are in some fashion masked by other, contrary dispositions of the agent, because in all cases, at least (...) some of the interfering dispositions are both relatively permanent and intrinsic to the agent. The presence of these intrinsic and relatively permanent states renders the ascription of a rule-following disposition to the agent false. (shrink)
Rule consequentialism (RC) holds that the rightness and wrongness of actions is determined by an ideal moral code, i.e., the set of rules whose internalization would have the best consequences. But just how many moral codes are there supposed to be? Absolute RC holds that there is a single morally ideal code for everyone, while Relative RC holds that there are different codes for different groups or individuals. I argue that Relative RC better meets the test of reflective equilibrium (...) than Absolute RC. In particular, I contend that Relative RC is superior because it accommodates our convictions about costless benefits. Some have charged that Relative RC threatens our convictions about the generality of moral codes and that it leads inevitably to what Brad Hooker calls “runaway relativism.” I argue that Relative RC has principled reasons for stopping this imagined slide down the slippery slope. (shrink)
The value of solidarity, which is exemplified in noble groups like the Civil Rights Movement along with more mundane teams, families and marriages, is distinctive in part because people are in solidarity over, for or with regard to something, such as common sympathies, interests, values, etc. I use this special feature of solidarity to resolve a longstanding puzzle about enacted social moral rules, which is, aren’t these things just heuristics, rules of thumb or means of coordination that we (...) ‘fetishize’ or ‘worship’ if we stubbornly insist on sticking to them when we can do more good by breaking them? I argue that when we are in a certain kind of solidarity with others, united by social moral rules that we have established among ourselves, the rules we have developed and maintain are a constitutive part of our solidary relationships with one another; and it is part of being in this sort of solidarity with our comrades that we are presumptively required to follow the social moral rules that join us together. Those in the Polish Revolution, for example, were bound by informally enforced rules about publicity, free speech and the use of violence, so following their own rules became a way of standing in a valuable sort of solidarity with one another. I explain why we can have non-instrumental reasons to follow the social moral rules that exist in our own society, improve our rules and even sometimes to break the otherwise good rules that help to unite us. (shrink)
Most plausible moral theories must address problems of partial acceptance or partial compliance. The aim of this paper is to examine some proposed ways of dealing with partial acceptance problems as well as to introduce a new Rule Utilitarian suggestion. Here I survey three forms of Rule Utilitarianism, each of which represents a distinct approach to solving partial acceptance issues. I examine Fixed Rate, Variable Rate, and Optimum Rate Rule Utilitarianism, and argue that a new approach, Maximizing Expectation Rate Rule (...) Utilitarianism, better solves partial acceptance problems. (shrink)
Pettit presents a selection of essays touching upon metaphysics, philosophical psychology, and the theory of rational regulation. The first part of the book discusses the rule-following character of thought. The second considers how choice can be responsive to different sorts of factors, while still being under the control of thought. The third examines the implications of this view of choice and rationality for the normative regulation of social behavior.
It is commonly assumed that when we assign different credences to a proposition, a perfect compromise between our opinions simply ‘splits the difference’ between our credences. I introduce and defend an alternative account, namely that a perfect compromise maximizes the average of the expected epistemic values that we each assign to alternative credences in the disputed proposition. I compare the compromise strategy I introduce with the traditional strategy of compromising by splitting the difference, and I argue that my strategy is (...) a reasonable characterization of epistemic compromise. (shrink)
In this article, through a comparative analysis of Dewey's and Laozi's relevant accounts, I examine a pragmatic insight concerning moral rules and moral experience to the effect that (i) fixed and formulated moral rules should not be taken as the final absolute moral authority, and (ii) attention needs to be paid to the moral agent's own moral experience that responds to the felt demands in concrete situations. The purpose of this paper is to enhance understanding the crucial points (...) of the pragmatic insight and to look at how, in certain complementary ways, Dewey's and Laozi's distinct approaches could contribute to the pragmatic insight and learn from each other. I endeavour to show several points: (1) The pragmatic insight has its distinct metaphysical foundations in Dewey's and Laozi's accounts, whose combination could enhance each other's visions and overcome each other's limitations; (2) Both Dewey and Laozi reject some sharp dualism to look at the nature of moral experience that responds to the felt demands in concrete situations; in so doing, their distinct focuses on different aspects, or developing stages, of such moral experience could be complementarily coordinated into a whole; (3) Their characterisations of the pragmatic insight are also based upon their distinct but related naturalistic perspectives to human moral foundation; Laozi's approach could provide some constructive insight for and due natural limitations on Dewey's account. (shrink)
The creation of new institutions and the initiation of new forms of behaviour cannot be explained only on the basis of constitutive rules – they also require a broader commitment of individuals who participate in social practices and, thus, to become members of a community. In this paper, I argue that the received conception of constitutive rules shows a problematic intellectualistic bias that becomes particularly manifest in three assumptions: (i) constitutive rules have a logical form, (ii) constitutive (...)rules have no normative force, and (iii) rules are essentially tied to a sanctioning authority. I discuss these three claims in light of real-life examples. The goal of this discussion is to show that the normative force of constitutive rules is based on the shared commitment of participants who engage in the relevant practices. The inner cohesion and the persistence in time of these practices is possible only because participants continuously calibrate their own forms of behaviour to that of the other members of the community, which underscores the social dimension of constitution. (shrink)
Famously, Kripke has argued that the central portion of the Philosophical Investigations describes both a skeptical paradox and its skeptical solution. Solving the paradox involves the element of the community, which determines correctness conditions for rule-following behavior. What do such conditions precisely consist of? Is it accurate to say that there is no fact to the matter of rule following? How are the correctness conditions sustained in the community? My answers to these questions revolve around the idea that a rule (...) is followed insofar as a convention is in place. In particular, I consider the game-theoretic definition of convention offered by David Lewis and I show that it illuminates essential aspects of the communitarian understanding of rule-following. Make the following experiment: say “It’s cold here” and mean “It’s warm here”. Can you do it?Ludwig Wittgenstein, Philosophical Investigations, 1953, §510.I can’t say “it’s cold here” and mean “it’s warm here”—at least, not without a little help from my friends.David Lewis, Convention. (shrink)
This paper employs some outcomes (for the most part due to David Lewis) of the contemporary debate on the metaphysics of dispositions to evaluate those dispositional analyses of meaning that make use of the concept of a disposition in ideal conditions. The first section of the paper explains why one may find appealing the notion of an ideal-condition dispositional analysis of meaning and argues that Saul Kripke’s well-known argument against such analyses is wanting. The second section focuses on Lewis’ work (...) in the metaphysics of dispositions in order to call attention to some intuitions about the nature of dispositions that we all seem to share. In particular, I stress the role of what I call "Actuality Constraint". The third section of the paper maintains that the Actuality Constraint can be used to show that the dispositions with which ideal-condition dispositional analyses identify my meaning addition by "+" do not exist (in so doing, I develop a suggestion put forward by Paul Boghossian). This immediately implies that ideal-condition dispositional analyses of meaning cannot work. The last section discusses a possible objection to my argument. The point of the objection is that the argument depends on an illicit assumption. I show (1) that, in fact, the assumption in question is far from illicit and (2) that even without this assumption it is possible to argue that the dispositions with which ideal-condition dispositional analyses identify my meaning addition by "+" do not exist. (shrink)
I introduce an account of when a rule normatively sustains a practice. My basic proposal is that a rule normatively sustains a practice when the value achieved by following the rule explains why agents continue following that rule, thus establishing and sustaining a pattern of activity. I apply this model to practices of belief management and identifies a substantive normative connection between knowledge and belief. More specifically, I proposes one special way that knowledge might set the normative standard for belief: (...) knowing is essentially the unique way of normatively sustaining cognition and, thereby, inquiry. In this respect, my proposal can be seen as one way of elaborating a “knowledge-first” normative theory. (shrink)
In this comment on Francesco Guala’s Understanding Institutions, I express my admiration for the book but I also raise some critical criticisms: His general account of institutions as rules-in-equilibrium seems to get their ontology wrong by disregarding their material side - their concrete realizations. It also diregards social institutions whose rules are not in equilibrium. Finally, his suggestion that institutional equilibria necessarily involve correlation devices appers to lack justification.
Foundational theories of mental content seek to identify the conditions under which a mental representation expresses, in the mind of a particular thinker, a particular content. Normativists endorse the following general sort of foundational theory of mental content: A mental representation r expresses concept C for agent S just in case S ought to use r in conformity with some particular pattern of use associated with C. In response to Normativist theories of content, Kathrin Glüer-Pagin and Åsa Wikforss propose a (...) dilemma, alleging that Normativism either entails a vicious regress or falls prey to a charge of idleness. In this paper, I respond to this argument. I argue that Normativism can avoid the commitments that generate the regress and does not propose the sort of explanation required to charge that its explanation has been shown to be problematically idle. The regress-generating commitment to be avoided is, roughly, that tokened, contentful mental states are the product of rule-following. The explanatory task Normativists should disavow is that of explaining how it is that beliefs and other contentful mental states are produced. I argue that Normativism, properly understood as a theory of content, does not provide this kind of psychological explanation, and therefore does not entail that such explanations are to be given in terms of rule-following. If this is correct, Normativism is not the proper target of the dilemma offered by Glüer-Pagin and Wikforss. Understanding why one might construe Normativism in the way Glüer-Pagin and Wikforss must, and how, properly understood, it avoids their dilemma, can help us to appreciate the attractiveness of a genuinely normative theory of content and the importance of paying careful attention to the sort of normativity involved in norm-based theories of content. (shrink)
Tanney challenges not only the cognitivist approach that has dominated philosophy and the special sciences for fifty years, but metaphysical-empirical approaches to the mind in general. Rules, Reason, and Self-Knowledge advocates a return to the world-involving, circumstance-dependent, normative practices where the rational mind has its home.
The distinction between rules and similarity is central to our understanding of much of cognitive psychology. Two aspects of existing research have motivated the present work. First, in different cognitive psychology areas we typically see different conceptions of rules and similarity; for example, rules in language appear to be of a different kind compared to rules in categorization. Second, rules processes are typically modeled as separate from similarity ones; for example, in a learning experiment, (...) class='Hi'>rules and similarity influences would be described on the basis of separate models. In the present article, I assume that the rules versus similarity distinction can be understood in the same way in learning, reasoning, categorization, and language, and that a unified model for rules and similarity is appropriate. A rules process is considered to be a similarity one where only a single or a small subset of an object's properties are involved. Hence, rules and overall similarity operations are extremes in a single continuum of similarity operations. It is argued that this viewpoint allows adequate coverage of theory and empirical findings in learning, reasoning, categorization, and language, and also a reassessment of the objectives in research on rules versus similarity. Key Words: categorization; cognitive explanation; language; learning; reasoning; rules; similarity. (shrink)
Can there be rules of language which serve both to determine meaning and to guide speakers in ordinary linguistic usage, i.e., in the production of speech acts? We argue that the answer is no. We take the guiding function of rules to be the function of serving as reasons for actions, and the question of guidance is then considered within the framework of practical reasoning. It turns out that those rules that can serve as reasons for linguistic (...) utterances cannot be considered as normative or meaning determining. Acceptance of such a rule is simply equivalent to a belief about meaning, and does not even presuppose that meaning is determined by rules. Rules that can determine meaning, on the other hand, i.e., rules that can be regarded as constitutive of meaning, are not capable of guiding speakers in the ordinary performance of speech acts. (shrink)
The purpose of this paper is to show how some of the controversial questions concerning utilitarianism can be clarified by the modelling techniques and the other analytical tools of decision theory (and, sometimes, of game theory). It is suggested that the moral rules of utilitarian ethics have a logical status similar to that of the normative rules (theorems) of such formal normative disciplines as decision theory and game theory.The paper argues that social utility should be defined, not in (...) hedonistic or in ideal-utilitarian terms, but rather in terms of individual preferences, in accordance with the author's equiprobability model of moral value judgments. (shrink)
In this paper, I develop an ecological-enactive perspective on the role rules play in linguistic behaviour. I formulate and motivate the hypothesis that metalinguistic reflexivity – our ability to talk about talking – is constitutive of linguistic normativity. On first sight, this hypothesis might seem to fall prey to a regress objection. By discussing the work of Searle, I show that this regress objection originates in the idea that learning language involves learning to follow rules from the very (...) start. I propose an ecological-enactive response to the regress objection. The key move is to deny that language learning consists initially in learning rules. A child first engages in regular communicative behaviour, by learning first-order linguistic skills, and then retroactively interprets her own behaviour in normative metalinguistic terms, i.e., as being guided by rules by relying on reflexive or second-order linguistic skills. On this view, metalinguistic reflexivity enables regulation of already regular communicative behaviour, and thereby constitutes linguistic normativity. Finally, I argue that linguistic rules are resources: they are available to participants in order to negotiate properties of situated language behaviour and thereby reorganize linguistic practices. The account developed in this paper thus allows us to understand the constitutive role of metalinguistic reflexivity for linguistic normativity without falling prey to the regress objection. (shrink)
The theory of morality we can call full rule - consequentialism selects rules solely in terms of the goodness of their consequences and then claims that these rules determine which kinds of acts are morally wrong. George Berkeley was arguably the first rule -consequentialist. He wrote, “In framing the general laws of nature, it is granted we must be entirely guided by the public good of mankind, but not in the ordinary moral actions of our lives. … The (...) rule is framed with respect to the good of mankind; but our practice must be always shaped immediately by the rule.” Writers often classed as rule -consequentialists include Austin 1832; Harrod 1936; Toulmin 1950; Urmson 1953; Harrison 1953; Mabbott 1953; Singer 1955; 1961; and most prominently Brandt 1959; 1963; 1967; 1979; 1989; 1996; and Harsanyi 1977; 1982; 1993. See also Rawls 1955; Hospers 1972; Haslett 1987; 1994, ch. 1; 2000; Attfield 1987, 103-12; Barrow 1991, ch. 6; Johnson 1991; Riley 1998; 2000; Shaw 1999; and Hooker 2000. Whether J. S. Mill's ethics was rule -consequentialist is controversial. (shrink)
We discuss a `negative' way of defining frame classes in (multi)modal logic, and address the question of whether these classes can be axiomatized by derivation rules, the `non-ξ rules', styled after Gabbay's Irreflexivity Rule. The main result of this paper is a metatheorem on completeness, of the following kind: If Λ is a derivation system having a set of axioms that are special Sahlqvist formulas and Λ+ is the extension of Λ with a set of non-ξ rules, (...) then Λ+ is strongly sound and complete with respect to the class of frames determined by the axioms and the rules. (shrink)
Page generated Wed Jul 28 21:45:16 2021 on philpapers-web-65948fd446-wp78j
cache stats: hit=7712, miss=3761, save= autohandler : 1224 ms called component : 1206 ms search.pl : 1085 ms render loop : 670 ms addfields : 398 ms initIterator : 373 ms publicCats : 320 ms next : 226 ms menu : 72 ms quotes : 61 ms save cache object : 58 ms retrieve cache object : 57 ms intermediate : 40 ms autosense : 37 ms search_quotes : 34 ms match_cats : 33 ms prepCit : 16 ms applytpl : 4 ms match_other : 2 ms init renderer : 2 ms match_authors : 1 ms setup : 0 ms auth : 0 ms writelog : 0 ms