Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Language and the Structure of Berkeley's World$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Kenneth L. Pearce

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198790334

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198790334.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use (for details see www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 16 January 2019

Rules and Rule‐Following

Rules and Rule‐Following

(p.67) 4 Rules and Rule‐Following
Language and the Structure of Berkeley's World

Kenneth L. Pearce

Oxford University Press

Rules and rule-following play a foundational role in Berkeley’s philosophy, yet Berkeley never offers an explicit theory of these phenomena. This chapter pulls together Berkeley’s scattered remarks on these topics to explain how Berkeley thinks about them. In particular, it is argued that Berkeley holds that it is possible to follow rules without being able to state them and that we can be mistaken about what rules we are following. Rule-following does require a kind of understanding or know-how, but this is often not articulable. It is further argued that, according to Berkeley, both language and inference depend on the following of rules that have the status of public conventions. Berkeley thus endorses a form of formalism, not only about mathematics, but about all forms of inference.

Keywords:   George Berkeley, rule-following, philosophy of language, formalism, philosophy of mathematics, inference

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .