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Hume's PoliticsCoordination and Crisis in the History of England$
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Andrew Sabl

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780691134208

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691134208.001.0001

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Coordination and Convention

Coordination and Convention

Chapter:
(p.21) Chapter 1 Coordination and Convention
Source:
Hume's Politics
Author(s):

Andrew Sabl

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691134208.003.0002

This chapter outlines the problem of coordination and the solution to it—convention—that is most relevant in the context of large-scale politics and government. It provides a basic introduction to coordination questions for non-specialists, and explores some implications of the coordination framework that even specialists may find of interest. Coordination theory divides political theorists into those who assume that no intelligent theorist can fail to know the literature on it and those who are very intelligent but have never seen the point of learning the first thing about it. Though coordination problems are often seen as a subset of formal theory, the crucial contribution of Hume's political theory is to explain, and help solve, coordination problems on scales that the usual tools of formal theory do not address.

Keywords:   coordination theory, convention, political theorists, formal theory, David Hume, politics, government

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