Language and Social Ontology – John Searle

In this talk I attempt to explain the distinctive features of human civilization. Animals have forms of social organization and communication but they do not have money, property, government, and marriage. Why not? Human institutional facts are created and maintained by a specific type of linguistic representation that I call a “status function declaration.” This operation can be performed over and over again on a wide range of subjects. It creates and maintains systems of deontic power: rights, duties, obligations and empowerments of various kinds. These provide the glue that hold human society together. They do that by providing humans with desire independent reasons for action, that is, reasons for doing things that are independent of their immediate inclinations.

John Searle in Oslo (the whole lecture) from Speldosa on Vimeo.

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12 responses to “Language and Social Ontology – John Searle

  1. To the best college essays are always amazing to the learn the some of the questions and answers to the process and the contains the good and knowledge for the essays making the sites the essay.

  2. “Everything has happened before – not once, but over and over again. We may not be able to solve our problems through what are pompously called "the lessons of history," but at least we should be able to recognize the issues and perhaps avoid some of the solutions that have failed in the past. And we can take heart in our own dilemma by realizing that other people in other times have survived worse.”
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  3. “It is common knowledge among psychologists that most of us underrate ourselves, short-change ourselves, sell ourselves short. Actually, there is no such thing as a superiority complex. People who seem to have one are actually suffering from feelings of inferiority; their "superior" self is a fiction, a coverup, to hide from themselves and others their deep-down feelings of inferiority and insecurity.”
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  4. Of course animals might have their own language and maybe if we can learn them, we will be able to talk to them pretty easily. Well, this is just a part of our imagination and I really don’t think it will work.

  5. Human culture has evolved from many stages. It has a long history that passed on to us in a very refined shape. As good citizens, we should know and practice our culture in a better way.

  6. These provide the glue that hold human society together. They do that by providing humans with desire independent reasons for action.

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