On Gregariousness

Jonas Faria Costa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


There seems to be a difference between drinking coffee alone at home and drinking coffee in a café. Yet, drinking coffee in a café is not a joint action. It is an individual action done in a social environment. The café, with each person minding their own business next to others, is what I call a gregarious state of affairs. Gregariousness refers to the warmth of the social world. It is the difference between studying alone at home and studying in the library. This light form of sociality is precisely what we were deprived of during the coronavirus lockdowns. Gregariousness cannot be explained as interaction or coordination, and neither can it be grasped solely as a normative aspect of the environment. This is why gregariousness cannot be explained using the concepts of strategic equilibrium, shared planning agency, joint commitment, we-intention, or second-person standpoint. In this paper, I will also provide a prospective theory of gregariousness. The aim of this paper is not to provide a definitive theory of gregariousness, nor to demonstrate that other theories of joint action are incorrect, but rather to draw attention to this aspect of the social world that has been largely neglected.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2
Pages (from-to)435-460
Number of pages26
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 20 Sept 2022


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