Boekhandel Douwes Den Haag

Bound by Convention

Obligation and Social Rules

David Owens

Bound by Convention

Bound by Convention

Obligation and Social Rules

Bound by Convention

 

This work argues that being bound by a social convention can be valuable for its own sake. People need meaning in their lives, and conventions infuse our acts and attitudes with significance, rendering them right or wrong.


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Beschrijving Bound by Convention

How should we assess the social structures that govern human conduct and settle whether we are bound by their rules? One approach is to ask whether those social arrangements (e.g. our family structures) reflect pre-conventional facts about our nature. If they do, compliance will serve our interests because these rules are not just conventions. Another approach is to ask whether following a convention has desirable consequences. For example, the rule which makes the
dollar bill legal tender is a convention and the great usefulness of having a medium of exchange ensures that we should follow that convention by accepting paper money in return for things of real value. This work argues that being bound by a convention can also be valuable for its own sake. People
need meaning in their lives and conventions infuse acts and attitudes with normative significance, rendering them right or wrong, appropriate or inappropriate, required or forbidden. Such rules bind us not just in virtue of their usefulness but also because their absence would impoverish our social world. Appreciating this point is essential to a proper understanding of our cultures of neighbourliness and hospitality, family structures, systems of property rights, conventions around speech, the
norms governing how we deport ourselves in public, and even the rules of a game.


ISBN
9780192896124
Pagina's
288
Verschijnt
NUR
730
Druk
1
Uitvoering
Hardback
Taal
Engels
Uitgever
OUP Oxford

Filosofie