Realism and Rule-Following

In R. Egidi, M. Dell'Utri & M. De Caro (eds.), Normatività Fatti, Valori. Macerata: Analisi Filosofiche Quodlibet. pp. 143-152 (2003)
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This paper explores how realism is crucial in understanding rule-following. The strategy involves starting from what has been achieved by Wittgenstein and others as regards semantic normativity and then applying it to other areas, including moral deliberation. The result shows that realism in rule-following involves not only the weak claim that rules are independent of the individual rule-follower, as conventions are. It involves also the stronger claim that conventional rules are constrained by non-conventional constraints. These constraints depend neither on the individual nor on the group. They arise from the nature of things. Human rule-followers are constrained first by being material beings, secondly by being living organisms, and thirdly by being rational.
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