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Collective Intentionality, Norms and Institutions

A Philosophical Investigation about Human Cooperation

Guido Seddone

Cooperation is the fundamental feature of intelligent beings. It makes them able to evolve complex social behaviors and to better resolve practical issues. Humans have evolved a very powerful form of cooperation, which is spread anywhere in the everyday life: norms, institutions, states, hierarchies, ordinary relationships, etc., are deeply determined by the original notion of cooperation. This book addresses the conditions of the human cooperative activities in order to focus on their common roots and to bring them back to an unitary origin. It is profoundly animated by the task of understanding how cooperative skills are able to evolve the plurality of the cooperative activities from the spontaneous to the institutional ones and to find a common denominator for joint actions. It also explores the social-political aspects related to joint activities and deals with the notion of intersubjective freedom.
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II Social-political Aspects of Cooperation

Extract

But there was a fraction of second when their eyes met,and for as long as it took to happen Winston knew —yes, he knew!—

that O’Brien was thinking the same thing as himself.An unmistakable message had passed. It was as thoughtheir two minds had opened and the thoughts wereflowing from one into the other through their eyes.George Orwell, 1984.

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