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The Social Stance And Its Relation To Intersubjectivity

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Chapter Summary

This chapter argues that it is sometimes necessary to go one step beyond Dennett's (1978) three different stances and adopt a social stance to certain phenomena. It discusses that this stance is necessary for social intentions, which are intentions that cannot be replaced by individual intentions. Social intentions function as causal factors and they are thereby helpful for understanding language and other conventions. The chapter also argues that the social stance can only be attained with advanced forms of intersubjectivity (theory of mind) involving social intentions and common beliefs. Among other things, this will explain why humans are the only species to which the social stance applies. Finally, the chapter argues that there is an interesting mapping between Peirce's (1932) three kinds of signs and different stances.

Keywords: Dennett; evolution of communication; intersubjectivity; social stance



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