The background rigidity required for rule-following implicates necessity and its place within normative practices. Necessity is the other side of normativity. While the “ought” of normativity requires that there is no causal necessity to what the practitioners do in fact, “the hardness of the logical must” points to what must be done and how matters must stand for any who participate in the game. Norms have practical as well as legitimating roles. The practical dimension concerns the character of the obligation created by the norm for the practitioner, the hardness of the logical must. For Wittgenstein, the obligations of bedrock practices are not optional for the agent. So, the way of following a rule that is not a matter of objectiﬁed meanings or interpretation is going on in the way that one must as a participant in the game. The problem of normative similarity is resolved within this alternative picture, but it brings with it the need for a re-examination of logical and conceptual necessity. A simple appeal to the autonomy of grammar or the logical principle
of non-contradiction is no more satisfactory in responding to this philosophical issue than an appeal to the brute fact of conformity in behavior was. Wittgenstein works with a substantive distinction between grammatical propositions and empirical propositions, a distinction that is akin to the classical distinction between necessary and empirical truths (as well as its linguistic counterpart, the distinction between analytic and synthetic propositions). Where the tradition explained this distinction in metaphysical terms or in those of objectiﬁed meanings or stipulated conventions, Wittgenstein draws it in terms of the distinction between what plays a normative role within a practice and what moves are within that practice. This results (like conventionalism) in a blurring of the distinction between the necessity of
mathematics and logic, on the one hand, and the “conceptual necessities” of empirical language-games, on the other. A fuller examination of the background against which moves are made in the language-game will provide insight into the character of necessity.