The Normative/Agentive Correspondence

Ryan Simonelli 1
  • 1 Philosophy, University of Chicago, Chicago, USA
Ryan Simonelli

Abstract

In recent work, Robert Brandom (2008. Between Saying and Doing. Oxford: Oxford University Press; 2019. A Spirit of Trust. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press) has articulated important connections between the deontic normative statuses of entitlement and commitment and the alethic modal statuses of possibility and necessity. In this paper, I articulate an until now unexplored connection between Brandom’s core normative statuses of entitlement and commitment and the agentive modal statuses of ability and compulsion. These modals have application not only in action, but also in perception and inference, and, in both of these cases, there is a direct mapping between the normative statuses that one bears towards various claims, articulated from the perspective of the attributor of commitments and entitlements, and the agentive modal statuses that one bears towards various judgments, articulated from the perspective of the undertaker of commitments. I will highlight this correspondence, focusing on the case of perception, and show how it sheds light on the account of mindedness that emerges from Brandom’s theory of discursive practice.

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