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Are there Lewis conventions?

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David Lewis’ analysis of conventions has been influential both in the philosophy of social science and in social science itself. In particular, it has illustrated the potential of game theoretic models in social ontology as well their limitations, and the importance of history for the analysis of social institutions. But are there any genuine Lewis-Conventions? In this paper I show how this question can be investigated using simple experimental techniques, and criticize those philosophers who try to refute Lewis’ theory using the traditional tools of language analysis and intuition.

This talk is part of the Departmental Seminars in History and Philosophy of Science series.

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