Simulation, seduction, and bullshit: cooperative and destructive misleading

Journal of the Philosophy of Sport 44 (3):300-314 (2017)
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This paper refines a number of theoretical distinctions relevant to deceptive play, in particular the difference between merely misleading actions and types of simulation commonly considered beyond the pale, such as diving. To do so, I rely on work in the philosophy of language about conversational convention and implicature, the distinction between lying and misleading, and their relation to concepts of seduction and bullshit. The paper works through a number of possible solutions to the question of what is wrong with simulation and its difference from strategic fouling, including the argument that games and their rules operate like contracts. I conclude that the wrongness lies in the injustice of unfair advantage gained through actions that silence opposition by resort to unanswerable play.

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Leslie A. Howe
University of Saskatchewan


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