Acting together, joint commitment, and obligation


What is it to do something with another person? In the author's book On Social Facts and elsewhere, she has conjectured that a special type of commitment - joint commitment - lies at the root of acting together and many other central social phenomena. Here she surveys some data pertinent to this conjecture, including the assumption of those who act together that they have associated rights against and obligations towards each other. She explains what joint commitment is, how it relates to the data noted, and argues that an appeal to joint commitment does not involve a pernicious form of holism.



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Margaret Gilbert
University of California, Irvine

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