Bartosz Brożek

Imagination and Rule-following

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Rule-following; Imagination; Imitation; Normativity.

My goal in this paper is to describe the role of imagination (mental simulation) in the practice of rule-following. I begin by outlining the importance of the human ability to learn through imitation for the rule-following practices. Then I proceed to distinguish between two types of rule-following: rudimentary and abstract. The former is an unconscious, intuitive, and emotion-driven process, while the latter is conscious, reason-based and requires language. I claim further that the full picture of the human rule-following practices can dispense with neither rudimentary nor abstract rules: it is the interplay between them that shapes human societies. Finally, I try to substantiate the thesis that the interplay in question requires an additional cognitive capacity, linking the unconscious rudimentary rule-following with its conscious and abstract counterpart. I believe that this capacity is mental simulation.

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