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Questions tagged [wittgenstein]

Ludwig Josef Johann Wittgenstein (1889 – 1951) was an Austrian-British philosopher, professor in philosophy at the University of Cambridge (1939-1947). He worked in foundations of mathematics and on mathematical logic, the philosophy of mind, and the philosophy of language. He played a central, if controversial, role in 20th-century analytic philosophy.

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An Analogy Between The Goal of the Tractatus and Formal Axiomatic Systems

After struggling with a few sections of the Tractatus, as well as the explanations of said sections is Monk's How to Read Wittgenstein and Glock's A Wittgenstein's Dictionary, I've come to a certain ...
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What is a 'fact' for early Wittgenstein?

In a nutshell: what is meant by a 'fact' in Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus? At the beginning of the text, it seems clear to me what Wittgenstein means by a 'fact', namely, a (real) state of affairs, ...
Sam's user avatar
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Is there a paradox in the proof of Godel's incompleteness theorem?

The Gödel Incompleteness Theorem was a major discovery in modern logic that has consistently attracted the attention of scientific and philosophical circles. However, since the Gödel Incompleteness ...
Zhang Hong's user avatar
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Image of Köhler's hexagons mentioned in Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations?

I was wondering whether anyone could help me find an image of Köhler's intepenetrating hexagons as mentioned in Part II, section xi of the Philosophical Investigations (3rd edition of Anscombe's ...
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Wittgenstein and formal relations

We can speak in a certain sense of formal properties of objects and atomic facts, or of properties of the structure of facts, and in the same sense of formal relations and relations of structures. (...
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Discussion about Graham Priest's dialetheic views on Eastern and Western philosophy

Australian philosopher Graham Priest is famous for advocating Dialetheism, the view that there are true contradictions. Dialetheism goes against the law of non-contradiction. This gives rise to the ...
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Wittgenstein's Tractatus, 2.15121

Some context from Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus: 2.151 The form of representation is the possibility that the things are combined with one another as are the elements of the picture. 2.1511 Thus ...
Donald Wen's user avatar
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3 answers
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Logical form, Wittgenstein

The question is going to be about TLP, not Philosophical investigations. I know that a logical form of a proposition can't be represented in the proposition itself. But can it be represented by the ...
Егор Галыкин's user avatar
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Wittgenstein and the possibility of expressing a logical form

Why did Wittgenstein in TLP considered the "logic of facts" and a logical form inexpressible? If I'm not mistaken, he himself a lot of times was trying to describe a logical form in his work....
Егор Галыкин's user avatar
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1 answer
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Wittgenstein, 4.063

An illustration to explain the concept of truth. A black spot on white paper; the form of the spot can be described by saying of each point of the plane whether it is white or black. To the fact that ...
Егор Галыкин's user avatar
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The logic of facts

The possibility of propositions is based upon the principle of the representation of objects by signs. My fundamental thought is that the “logical constants” do not represent. That the logic of the ...
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Wittgenstein on sense

What's sense according to Wittgenstein? I think I might have missed the definition in TLP, but I can't find it anywhere. From the context it's obvious that Wittgenstein's sense isn't that of Frege. ...
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Wittgenstein and the primary elements

What does it mean to say that we can attribute neither being nor non-being to the elements? One might say: if everything that we call “being” and “non-being” consists in the obtaining and non-...
Егор Галыкин's user avatar
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9 answers
6k views

Does the success of AI (Large Language Models) support Wittgenstein's position that "meaning is use"?

By 'success' we think of current AI/LLMs capacity of producing text that is regarded as coherent, informative, even convincing, by human readers [see for instance Spitale et al. and Salvi et al.] ...
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Wittgenstein and tautology

What does it mean to say that we can attribute neither being nor non-being to the elements? One might say: if everything that we call “being” and “non-being” consists in the obtaining and non-...
Егор Галыкин's user avatar
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René Descartes' and Wittgenstein Doubt: Self and the Existence of Others?

Can one doubt their own existence in the world while simultaneously doubting the existence of others? If one's being isn't present because they aren't present themselves, wouldn't that make it ...
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Are Wittgenstein's aesthetic and ethical claims during the Tractatus period meant to be descriptive or prescriptive?

Are Wittgenstein's aesthetic and ethical claims during the Tractatus period meant to be descriptive or prescriptive? I read it, followed the argument and forgot most of it, but I can recall that ...
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Can this argument for particularism be applied to egoism?

https://wab.uib.no/agora/tools/alws/collection-8-issue-1-article-5.annotate how can we hold on to moral principles in the face of the seeming impossibility to formulate a moral principle which is ...
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Private language argument as an argument against the self and so egosim

“The words of this language are to refer to what only the speaker can know — to his immediate private sensations. So another person cannot understand the language.”... Immediately after introducing ...
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Wittgenstein's chess example

When one shows someone the king in chess and says “This is the king”, one does not thereby explain to him the use of this piece a unless he already knows the rules of the game except for this last ...
Егор Галыкин's user avatar
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The problem of philosophy?

“The problem of philosophy is a linguistic problem, and every disagreement can be traced back to a difference in interpretation.” “No wonder we know that the deepest problems are not really problems ...
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Can ideas be perfectly illustrated using non-mathematical language?

Reading through many philosophy forums it seems like many ideas get bogged down in the definitions of ideas which seem to go down an endless spiral of caveats and contradictions depending on who ...
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Is private language argument against absolute idealism?

Wittgenstein famously proposed that private language is an incoherent notion. Does this refute some version of idealism which claims that the reality is totally mind-dependent ? For me an argument ...
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Does the private language argument conflict with monotheism?

This blog post opposes the PLA to unitarianism (the belief in only one divine person), which is mostly a parochial, intra-Christian objection that, if generalized over other religions, seems like it ...
Kristian Berry's user avatar
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Is there a difference between an I-private and a we-private language?

Alternatively, is the privacy clause in the argument relative? So to say, imagine two people A and B looking at a patch of blue together, while standing next to someone C who's blind. A says to B, &...
Kristian Berry's user avatar
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Can we conclude from Wittgenstein that all philosophy shows just as well that all philosophy is nonsense?

There's been a lot of skeptical questions recently, about knowledge, god, probability, other minds, all sorts of crazy stuff (I'm still waiting for "nothing is true") Can we conclude from ...
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How serious are believers in the private language argument?

From time to time I come across people who endorse Wittgenstein's notion that language is a fundamentally public activity, and that a private language would be meaningless. I always feel somewhat ...
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What is the crux of Wittgenstein’s PLA?

I’m reading Appiah’s Thinking it Through and I am having a little bit of trouble understanding grasping his statement of the crux of the private language argument(s). In particular, I don't understand ...
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The private language argument and Descartes's private thoughts

In his "Thinking it Through" textbook, Appiah writes It is a big step from saying that some of our mental states are things that other people can know about, to saying, with the ...
EE18's user avatar
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Going against the limits of language

I vaguely remember a sentence of Wittgenstein which was about the duty of philosophy: that is, to go against the limits of the language. This was in his late period of philosophy. What is the precise ...
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Is mysticism a confusion of language?

Is mysticism a confusion of language, in Wittgenstein's sense? You'd have thought it was, especially if it makes any positive claims. But does it not ever "show" things, ever?
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Wittgenstein on indeterminate boundaries

Wittgenstein, for instance, urged that “an indefinite boundary is not really a boundary at all” (1953: 45e). https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/vagueness/ What did he make of the Sorites paradox, ...
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How would Wittgenstein explain the ability of blind people to learn a language?

It we take Wittgensteins picture theory of language for granted, The picture theory of meaning states that statements are meaningful if, and only if, they can be defined or pictured in the real world ...
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"This seems to abolish logic, but does not do so."

If language is to be a means of communication there must be agreement not only in definitions but also (queer as this may sound) in judgements. This seems to abolish logic, but does not do so. -- It ...
UtilityMaximiser's user avatar
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Was Wittgenstein a mathematical finitist?

Wittgenstein was a notorious critic of set theory, calling it "laughable nonsense". However, he also wholeheartedly rejected intuitionist logic of Brouwer and Weyl, saying "it is ...
Dennis Kozevnikoff's user avatar
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What was Wittgenstein's real motive for wanting to move to Russia?

Ludwig Wittgenstein was no doubt a fascinating genius who was also very mysterious. He was known for doing outrageous things that no one saw coming, and there is one episode in particular that I find ...
Dennis Kozevnikoff's user avatar
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5 answers
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Can we reduce Wittgenstein's claims of human language being limited by some actual propositions about the limits of language?

Wittgenstein argued that there are limits to what language can do, and that our attempts to use language to describe the world can sometimes lead us into confusion and error. He believed that many ...
Sayaman's user avatar
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Does Wittgenstein's picture theory contradict Frege's theory of Sinn and Bedeutung?

The picture theory of meaning states that statements are meaningful if, and only if, they can be defined or pictured in the real world. The very notion of meaning as used here is argued against by ...
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Can you be objectively offended?

Example: Person A is talking to person B and uses a phrase that B is offended by. Person A is unapologetic because they personally don't take offense to that phrase and feel taking offense to it is ...
jankinator's user avatar
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1 answer
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What does argument 4.0411 in the TLP mean?

This whole paragraph 4.0411 in the TLP makes no sense(in the non-Wittgenstein sense :D ) to me and I will quote it and add my questions. If, for example, we wanted to express what we now write as ‘(x)...
Hamzalihi's user avatar
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Wittgenstein like analysis of Carl Jung's work?

So I've been skeptical of Jung's ideas. More so because one of the philosophical moves Wittgenstein makes is: considering the possibility that just because you can grammatically string a bunch of ...
More Anonymous's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
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Help needed in understanding an excerpt from PI (Section 509)

What if we asked someone, “In what sense are these words a description of what you see?” — and he answers: “I mean this by these words.” (Perhaps he was looking at a landscape.) Why is this answer “I ...
Dimen's user avatar
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8 answers
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Is "This sentence is written in English" nonsense?

Wittgenstein and many others have said that our language gives the appearance of truth to some nonsense. Do you think the very simple "This sentence is written in English." is such nonsense ...
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Neo-liberalism, language and freedom?

Background Byung Chulhan in his book psychopolitics defines freedom in two ways: a. He defines it as an interlude which the subject feels when passing between lifestyles or ideologies. This is a ...
More Anonymous's user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
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What does the emergence of different interpretations of Wittgenstein signify?

So I was listening to this Podcast about Wittgenstein the speakers are the Professor of Philosophy of University of South Hampton - Ray Monk, Senior Lecturer of University of York - Mary Macgin and ...
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1 answer
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Is Wittgenstein's proposition "the world is a collection of facts not things" similar to Hegel's claim that objects are not things but forces?

They both seem to suggest that objects are not defined by their discrete appearances but rather by the conceptual framework which allows us to perceive them. In case of Wittgenstein the world is all ...
Ash Rivers's user avatar
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311 views

Can set theory be non-extensional?

Here is Juliet Floyd stating "Wittgenstein's non-extensionalism, like Russell's in Principia, precluded development of an extensional theory of the infinite (set theory). https://youtu.be/...
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Does Wittgenstein rule-following mean everything is defined as what a human is supposed do with it? What does it say about ontology?

To me rule-following is a very “homespun” way to explain logic, math, and language. Meaning the social-communicative aspect of “rule-following” provides an explanation for informal and formal language ...
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What are Ludwig Wittgenstein's greatest accomplishments?

I have heard a lot about Ludwig Wittgenstein, but what are his greatest accomplishments? I tried looking up on Wikipedia but didn't understand much.
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497 views

What was Wittgenstein's view on happiness?

I was wondering whether Wittgenstein is a proponent of happiness being central to a life well lived. Generally, from Ronald Suter's article and what I've read about him, Id wager the answer is yes. ...
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