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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How shall I understand Wittgenstein's comment on Russell's work?

Ludwig Wittgenstein said Russell’s books should be bound in two colours…those dealing with mathematical logic in red – and all students of philosophy should read them; those dealing with ethics and ...
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Arguments against “meaning is use ”

Maybe , we can undermine this stance by looking at what "meaning is use" implies or requires. How do we determine the correct usage in a context or do the words decide the context ? This ...
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On the interpretation of functional and vanishing of Russel's paradox in Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus [duplicate]

3.333 A function cannot be its own argument, because the functional sign already contains the prototype of its own argument and it cannot contain itself. If, for example, we suppose that the function ...
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(In)formal languages and meaning of words

I vaguely remember having heard that one can formally prove that no amount of (successful) communication between two people ensures that the assigned meaning of their words converges. I think it had ...
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The form of elementary propositions in TLF

In Tractatus Wittgenstein states that: 4.22 An elementary proposition consists of names. It is a nexus, a concatenation, of names. Suppose now that L is a first order language. As far as I ...
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What exactly is a private language defined as?

I'm reading this section: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Private_language_argument What a private language is "If someone were to behave as if they understood a language of which no one else can ...
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First person, present indicative of “To believe falsely”

There is a Wittgenstein quote I've been thinking about ever since going through AI to Zombies: If there were a verb meaning 'to believe falsely', it would not have any significant first person, ...
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Collaborative work between Linguists and Computer Language designers to help fix the English Language

Is there work being done to help remove all the ambiguities and loose meaning of the English language by using low to mid level computer programming languages (avoiding more recent "high level" ...
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A question about Wittgenstein's Tractatus

"It is an hypothesis that the sun will rise tomorrow: and this means that we do not know whether it will . There is no compulsion making one thing happen because another has happened" is a well-known ...
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What did Wittgenstein mean when he said “knowledge is in the end based on acknowledgement”?

What exactly is acknowledgement here?
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Wittgenstein on ethics and the big book experiment

This is taken from the lecture Wittgenstein delivered on ethics. Wittgenstein proceeds to establish a controversial position in ethics. Although all judgments of relative value can be shown to be ...
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Why does Wittgenstein have a problem with writing “f(a, b). a = b"?

Why does Wittgenstein have a problem with logical statements saying nothing ? (5.5303) . How would Wittgenstein want us to interpret f(a,a) ? He also mentions axiom of infinity from which Russell ...
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Synthetic a priori judgments and Hinge Propositions

Is anyone aware of any books or articles that explicitly discuss the relationship between Kant’s notion of the Synthetic a Priori [judgment], e.g. “every color is extended,” "Nothing can be ...
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Wittgenstein and “linguistic trap”

In a book on philosophy I've lost by now I encounter an argument about "linguistic trap" idea attributed to Wittgenstein, that is, such a trap is supposed to be "taking linguistic convention or ...
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What sentence convinced Russell that Wittgenstein was not a “complete idiot”?

On several occasions I've come across Russell's account of his decision that Wittgenstein was not a "complete idiot", but I've never been able to figure out what Wittgenstein wrote to him or what that ...
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Does Wittgenstein's “The limits of my language mean the limits of my world” relate ontology with language?

Since Badiou equates ontology with Mathematics, if both philosophers are to be taken verbatim, there's a triple equivalence to consider: ontology = Mathematics = language.
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Wittgenstein and theology

Wittgenstein noted that we engage in language games and quite often we borrow words from different games and misuse them such as using words with scientific connotations in religious discourse or ...
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Wittgenstein on Mechanics

Can someone explain what Wittgenstein was trying to say in Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus ? Specifically propositions 6.341-6.343. What does he mean when he says that a system like Newtonian Mechanics ...
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Was Wittgenstein a cognitivist?

It is a common misconception to think that Wittgenstein was anti-theoretical in his Philosophical Investigations. There's simply too much evidence that doesn't support that conclusion. At first I ...
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Wittgenstein - self and ethics in the Tractatus

I think that I quite understand the relation between ontology and "logical syntax" of language as it is presented by Wittgenstein in Tractatus. He states that there are atomic entities, ...
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Did early Wittgenstein view mathematics as “sense-less” or “non-sensical”?

G. E. M Anscombe makes the following distinction between Wittgenstein's use of sense-less (sinnlos) and nonsense (unsinnig): (page 163) We must distinguish in the theory of the Tractatus between ...
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Does anyone discuss 'limit' in Wittgenstein?

Does anyone discuss 'limit' in Wittgenstein? The word "limit" keeps appearing in the Tractatus: of thinking; of language; of the world; of the natural sciences; of my visual field. It's used even more ...
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Which currently active philosophers could be considered Wittgenstein followers?

A. C. Grayling offers the following description of currently active followings of Wittgenstein (page 129): The Wittgensteinians accordingly make a distinctive although relatively small group in ...
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In what way did Wittgenstein repudiate the Tractatus?

It's very well known that Wittgenstein thought that with the Tractatus the problems in philosophy were pseudo-problems, but then went on to produce further philosophical works like The Philosophical ...
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Are there examples of necessity other than logical necessity?

G. E. M. Anscombe writes the following (page 80): ...[Wittgenstein's] view, expressed at 6.37, that 'there is only logical necessity', and at 5.525, that the possibility of a state of affairs is ...
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What truth-functions of elementary propositions can be consired to form a picture?

In Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus Ludwig Wittgenstein says that every elementary proposition is a picture. It is clear that we must make a distinction between elementary propositions and other ...
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Why are there no pre-eminent numbers in Wittgenstein's logic? [duplicate]

What does Wittgenstein mean when he says in the Tractatus that there are no preeminent numbers in logic? He makes mention of this three times in the Tractatus: 4.128 The logical forms are anumerical. ...
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What are the problems with Tractatus?

Tractatus, in a way, says World isn't what is out there, but is the world you imagine. World is what you would tell another person when you will recount this world. (It is what you would 'know' of the ...
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What did Wittgenstein mean when he said death is not an event in one's life?

What did Wittgenstein mean when he said death is not an event in one's life? It's my understanding that death is not something that applies to the stipulated solipsistic self of his philosophy. ...
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Mechanics of Perception

How is perception formed? By perception I mean 'thought' or 'idea' of the World. What I see by itself does not contribute anything to thought. Only an acknowledgement can contribute to structuring of ...
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How does contemporary analytic philosophy reply to the late Wittgenstein's injunction against theory?

In the In Our Time episode on Wittgenstein philosopher Ray Monk says the following: It's a central view of the later Wittgenstein that there can be no such thing as a philosophical theory. I think ...
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Where does Bertrand Russell discuss mysticism?

G. E. M. Anscombe writes in An Introduction to Wittgenstein's Tractatus (1971, St Augustine's Press) the following about Wittgenstein's use of the concept of mysticism: (page 170) But Wittgenstein ...
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According to early Wittgenstein, do we need language or thought for the mystical to show itself?

According to early Wittgenstein, do we need language or thought for the mystical to "show itself"? He does say the mystical shows itself. 6.522: There is indeed the inexpressible. This shows ...
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Definition vs Logic

Logical consequence means that, if, P implies Q, then Q is True not because (or when) we interpret (or find) it to be True, but it is set to True as soon as P is set to True. This means that Q is ...
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How much background do I need to read the book: Tractatus logico-philosophicus?

Upon careful consideration of the literature I want to read in the following months, I have stumbled into a particular book which is called: Tractatus logico-philosophicus, written by brilliand author ...
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Wittgenstein's solipsist, from Tractatus?

According to the early Wittgenstein of the Tractatus, the solipsist is one and one and the same with the world. He then makes the claim that solipsism coincides with realism. 5.64, Wittgenstein ...
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Using solipsism's incoherence with doubt as proof of the external world?

I have the following rough outline of utilizing solipsism as a proof by contradiction to the goal of asserting an epistemological proof of the external world. A solipsist (Wittgenstian) lives in a ...
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Is all language meaningful?

Wittgenstein claimed that many philosophers misuse language and write nonsense. He later claimed that a private language, one that cannot in principle be understood, is impossible. Does that suggest ...
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How exactly Wittgenstein “inspired two schools of thought [logical positivism/logical empiricism and analytic/linguistic movement/Cambridge School]”?

In the page 527 of von Wright's Ludwig Wittgenstein, A Biographical Sketch in The Philosophical Review, Vol. 64, No. 4 (Oct., 1955), he tells: It has been said that Wittgenstein inspired two ...
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What could be “Wittgenstein's strong disapproval of Russell's introduction to the book [Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus]”?

In the page 536 of von Wright's Ludwig Wittgenstein, A Biographical Sketch in The Philosophical Review, Vol. 64, No. 4 (Oct., 1955), he tells: The author of the Tractatus thought he had solved all ...
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Where did Carnap express his disagreement with Wittgenstein's Tractatus?

I read the following in G. E. M. Anscombe's description of the consequences of Wittgenstein's picture theory of language: (page 82) Carnap strongly objected to Wittgenstein's doctrine with its ...
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Has any consensualists written on Wittgenstein?

"This was our paradox: no course of action could be determined by a rule, because any course of action can be made out to accord with the rule" - Wittgenstein This paradox is purported to call ...
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Are Wittgenstein's propositions about death incompatible with momentariness?

Are Wittgenstein's propositions about death incompatible with momentariness? I think mean that death, which is a cessation that is not lived through, cannot change life, and we are immortal outside ...
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What criticisms of Wittgenstein's philosophy of language have been offered?

In a 2003 obituary, Anna Sherrat described one of my many philosophy heroes, Donald Davidson, as “one of the greatest American philosophers.” She did an excellent job of summarizing one of the ...
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What is Wittgenstein referring to in 4.113

Philosophy limits the disputable sphere of natural science Does this refer to the demarcation problem (what is natural science) or occam's razor (what is the best explanation)? Or is it meant ...
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If logical propositions aren't tautologies (a la Wittgenstein), then what could they be?

This is a historical question about philosophical views. I believe I understand the claim made by Wittgenstein and others that logical propositions are tautologies. I'd like to know what other views ...
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What was Wittgenstein's argument against Cantor's transfinite numbers and where did he make his objection?

G. E. M. Anscombe had this to say about propositions in Wittgenstein's Tractatus: (page 137) It seems likely enough, indeed, that Wittgenstein objected to Cantor's result even at this date, and ...
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What does Wittgenstein mean when he says “there are no numbers in logic”?

From the Tractatus: 5.453 All numbers in logic stand in need of justification. Or rather, it must become evident that there are no numbers in logic. There are no pre-eminent numbers. What does ...
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Where Wittgenstein argues that thinking is done in natural language?

I am looking for a precise reference where Wittgenstein writes about the use of ordinary language when people think, and that they do not use formal logic. Even in the case of mathematics. Can you ...
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Private rule following

If I understand Wittgensteins Philosophical Investigations correctly, it is not possible to follow a rule in private. First of all, I am not quite sure if my understanding of rule-following is correct ...

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