Essays on Theory, Collective Action and Social Order
Chapter 12: Norms in the Evolution ofSocial Order
NORMS OCCUPY A CRUCIAL PLACE IN THEORIES OF SOCIAL ORDER. IN THIS ARTICLE, I discuss some of the contributions and limits of norms with respect to the evolution of social order. The problem of social order—that is, the attainment of cooperation among large numbers of individuals—is fundamental to disciplines ranging from evolutionary biology to economics, psychology, political science, sociology, and anthropology. No one can adequately represent the various approaches to this problem that are taken in all these disciplines. In what follows, I sketch out and assess what I consider to be the main explanations currently at play
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