Studies in the Limitation of Rationality
By (author) Jon Elster
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Solomonic Judgements by Jon Elster
Book DescriptionThis volume of essays is very much a sequel to the two earlier collections by Jon Elster, Ulysses and the Sirens and Sour Grapes. His topic is rationality - its scope, its limitations, and its failures. Elster considers rational responses to the insufficiency of reason itself, and to the 'indeterminacies' in deploying rational-choice theory and discusses the irrationality of not seeing when, where, and what these are. A key essay which gives the collection its title examines disputes in cases of child custody, which are paradigmatically indeterminate. Leaving aside cases where one parent is patently unfit and assuming that protracted dispute is against the immediate interests of the child, Elster argues that three options present themselves: a strong presumption in favour of the mother, a strong presumption in favour of the primary caretaker (also likely to be the mother), and tossing a coin. Though the first two options may be preferable in the short/medium term, Elster argues that there is a case for randomisation in the long term. The book will be read with interest by anyone concerned with political and social science.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780521376082
(228mm x 152mm x 14mm)
Imprint: Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publish Date: 28-Jul-1989
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Jon Elster
Sour Grapes, Hardback (August 2016)
This book is Jon Elster's influential study of irrationality, challenging orthodox theories of rational choice.
Explaining Social Behavior, Hardback (July 2015)
A substantially revised edition of Jon Elster's critically acclaimed book exploring the nature of social behavior and the social sciences.
Secrecy and Publicity in Votes and Debates, Hardback (June 2015)
Offers the first comprehensive discussion of the effects of secrecy and publicity on debates and votes in committees and assemblies.
Majority Decisions, Hardback (June 2014)» View all books by Jon Elster
This book presents the most complete set of analytical, normative, and historical discussions of majority decision making to date.
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