Location of Repository

Conventionalism

By Owen M Fiss

Abstract

Conventionalism is a viewpoint, most closely associated with the later writings of Wittgenstein, that emphasizes practice and context. It holds, for example, that we understand a concept not when we grasp some fact, but when we can successfully use that concept within a language game or a defined context, and that truth is a function of the agreement of those participating within a practice rather than the other way around. There\u27s nothing \u22out there,\u22 and even if there were, we couldn\u27t possibly know it. Stanley Fish has developed a general theory of interpretation that also emphasizes practice and context and accordingly might be seen as a branch of conventionalism. His concern was first with literary texts; he is a Milton scholar and, with the publication in 1980 of Is There a Text in This Class?, also established his preeminence as a literary theorist. In a number of recent articles, however, he moved on to legal texts, and in one sought to criticize an account that I gave of constitutional interpretation

Topics: Law
Publisher: Yale Law School Legal Scholarship Repository
Year: 1985
OAI identifier: oai:digitalcommons.law.yale.edu:fss_papers-2207
Download PDF:
Sorry, we are unable to provide the full text but you may find it at the following location(s):
  • http://digitalcommons.law.yale... (external link)
  • http://digitalcommons.law.yale... (external link)
  • Suggested articles


    To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.