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Game theory, cheap talk and post-truth politics: David Lewis vs. John Searle on reasons for truth-telling

S.M. Amadae

Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour, Volume: 48, Issue: 3

Swansea University Author: S.M. Amadae

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DOI (Published version): 10.1111/jtsb.12169

Abstract

This paper examines two accounts of agents' truth-telling versus fabrication of facts: that of David Lewis and John Searle. Relying on game theory, Lewis argues that truth-telling will occur when agents' interests align, but that as soon as there are conflicts of interest, actors will deci...

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Published in: Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour
ISSN: 00218308
Published: Wiley 2018
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URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa40167
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spelling 2020-07-10T14:07:01.7555169 v2 40167 2018-05-15 Game theory, cheap talk and post-truth politics: David Lewis vs. John Searle on reasons for truth-telling 9e4a01e93bf5f0d15b071bc9a9fa3c32 S.M. Amadae S.M. Amadae true false 2018-05-15 APC This paper examines two accounts of agents' truth-telling versus fabrication of facts: that of David Lewis and John Searle. Relying on game theory, Lewis argues that truth-telling will occur when agents' interests align, but that as soon as there are conflicts of interest, actors will decide whether to tell the truth or be deceptive as a matter of strategic calculation. Searle, as well as Paul Grice, argue instead that agents are motivated to tell the truth because it is a condition of meaningfully communicating. This paper raises the caution that a pedagogy of truth-telling relying wholly on game theory may reinforce selectively upholding standards of accuracy in communication strictly as a matter of incentives. Therefore a game theoretic approach to language use and understanding may reinforce an erosion of standards of public deliberation, thus contributing to actors' participation in post-truth politics. Journal Article Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 48 3 Wiley 00218308 cheap talk, David Lewis, game theory, John Searle, Paul Grice, post-truth politics, rationality, truth 15 5 2018 2018-05-15 10.1111/jtsb.12169 COLLEGE NANME Politics, Philosophy and International Relations COLLEGE CODE APC Swansea University 2020-07-10T14:07:01.7555169 2018-05-15T13:52:59.8463860 College of Arts and Humanities Political and Cultural Studies S.M. Amadae 1 0040167-18052018153119.pdf AmadaeCheapTalkPostTruthPoliticsJSocialBehaviorDec4_2017Submitted_OpenAccess.pdf 2018-05-18T15:31:19.9030000 Output 296395 application/pdf Accepted Manuscript true 2019-05-15T00:00:00.0000000 true eng
title Game theory, cheap talk and post-truth politics: David Lewis vs. John Searle on reasons for truth-telling
spellingShingle Game theory, cheap talk and post-truth politics: David Lewis vs. John Searle on reasons for truth-telling
S.M. Amadae
title_short Game theory, cheap talk and post-truth politics: David Lewis vs. John Searle on reasons for truth-telling
title_full Game theory, cheap talk and post-truth politics: David Lewis vs. John Searle on reasons for truth-telling
title_fullStr Game theory, cheap talk and post-truth politics: David Lewis vs. John Searle on reasons for truth-telling
title_full_unstemmed Game theory, cheap talk and post-truth politics: David Lewis vs. John Searle on reasons for truth-telling
title_sort Game theory, cheap talk and post-truth politics: David Lewis vs. John Searle on reasons for truth-telling
author_id_str_mv 9e4a01e93bf5f0d15b071bc9a9fa3c32
author_id_fullname_str_mv 9e4a01e93bf5f0d15b071bc9a9fa3c32_***_S.M. Amadae
author S.M. Amadae
author2 S.M. Amadae
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description This paper examines two accounts of agents' truth-telling versus fabrication of facts: that of David Lewis and John Searle. Relying on game theory, Lewis argues that truth-telling will occur when agents' interests align, but that as soon as there are conflicts of interest, actors will decide whether to tell the truth or be deceptive as a matter of strategic calculation. Searle, as well as Paul Grice, argue instead that agents are motivated to tell the truth because it is a condition of meaningfully communicating. This paper raises the caution that a pedagogy of truth-telling relying wholly on game theory may reinforce selectively upholding standards of accuracy in communication strictly as a matter of incentives. Therefore a game theoretic approach to language use and understanding may reinforce an erosion of standards of public deliberation, thus contributing to actors' participation in post-truth politics.
published_date 2018-05-15T04:11:26Z
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