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[Wittrs] Wittgenstein's 1929 Paper and His Metamorphosis in Thought [message #5205] Tue, 20 July 2010 15:25 Go to next message
SWMirsky is currently offline  SWMirsky
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--- In Wittrs@yahoogroups.com[/email], wittrsamr@...[/email] wrote:
>
Walter's reference on that other list to the infamous paper by Wittgenstein named below, strikes me as a good opportunity to consider the transition Wittgenstein we have often argued about here and which is so often a subject of controversy:


>
> Again, he discusses that matter in "Some Remarks on Logical Form." I think he
> there holds "This is red" to be tantamount to "This item appears on line 4
> column 6." That is, if something takes up that particular place, nothing else
> can.
>
> W
>

I took the liberty of locating the paper on-line:

http://thatmarcusfamily.org/philosophy/Course_Websites/Readings/Wittgenstein%2 0-%20Some%20Remarks%20on%20Logical%20Form.pdf

It strikes me that, given that Wittgenstein famously junked this paper before delivering it (and delivered something else on an impromptu basis instead) because he said the paper he had planned was worthless, I thought it would give us a good window into just what it was Wittgenstein was then in the early stages of leaving behind. Many Wittgensteinophiles are much enamoured of his first book, the Tractatus, and admire its logical rigour as well as its aphoristic style and appealing profundity. Its difficulty in getting a clear fix on what he had in mind lends to the aura of mysticism that further surrounds the work. Entirely forgotten (all too often!) is that the man, himself, chose to reject much of it (though he never really got specific as to which parts he was explicitly rejecting).

Still, this paper does contain some specific rejections, if they are not yet very broad and even if the mindset in the paper (tossed aside, as already noted, by Wittgenstein as worthless!) still reeks of the Tractarian approach.

Accordingly, I've taken the trouble of picking out some of the text from that article for reproduction here and for some comments. I shall put my own comments in square brackets to distinguish them clearly from the excerpted text:



p. 163

"We must eventually reach the ultimate connection of the terms, the immediate connection which cannot be broken without . . ."

p. 163

"destroying the propositional form as such. The propositions which represent this ultimate connexion of terms I call, after B. Russell, atomic propositions. They, then, are the kernels of every proposition, they contain the material, and all the rest is only a development of this material. It is to them we have to look for the subject matter of propositions. It is the task of the theory of knowledge to find them and to understand their construction out of the words or symbols. This task is very difficult, and Philosophy has hardly yet begun to tackle it at some points. What method have we for tackling it? The idea is to express in an appropriate symbolism what in ordinary language leads to endless misunderstandings. That is to say, where ordinary language disguises logical structure, where it allows the formation of pseudopropositions, where it uses one term in an infinity of different meanings, we must replace it by a symbolism which gives a clear picture of the logical structure, excludes pseudopropositions, and uses its terms unambiguously."

[Here we have Wittgenstein's own explicit embracing of logical atomism at a date that is much later than the Tractatus. As we find with Russell, there is an emphasis on how hard it all is (see Russell's Logical Atomism), an expression of what must be done but is yet so far from being accomplished. The later Wittgenstein clearly rejected this approach in favor of declaring that everything is before us, that our job was to go back to what we already knew, etc. Note too that, in the above, Wittgenstein is at pains to emphasize the need to develop a language that is free of the ambiguities of ordinary language. The later Wittgenstein, as most of us will know, took precisely the reverse position, proposing that it was to ordinary language that we must look to genuinely understand what we were perplexed by, to shatter the puzzles that bemuse us philosophically.]

". . . we can only arrive at a correct analysis by,what might be called, the logical investigation of the phenomena themselves, i.e., in a certain sense a posteriori, and not by conjecturing about a priori possibilities."

[Here he seems to be calling the philosopher to look at the facts of experience itself, and yet he rarely if ever does that himself, except insofar as he focuses on the facts of logic which would be, in his own way of seeing things in the first period, a rather strange notion of experiential knowledge.]

p. 164

"Let us imagine two parallel planes, I and II. On plane I figures are drawn, say, ellipses and rectangles of different sizes and shapes, and it is our task to produce images of these figures on plane II. Then we can imagine two ways, amongst others, of doing this. We can, first, lay down a law of projection say that of orthogonal projection or any other-and then proceed to project all figures from I into II, according to this law. Or, secondly, we could proceed thus: We lay down the rule that every ellipse on plane I is to appear as
a circle in plane II, and every rectangle as a square in II. Such a way of representation may be convenient for us if for some reason we prefer to draw only circles and squares on plane II. Of course, from these images the exact shapes of the original figures on plane I cannot be immediately inferred. We can only gather from them that the original was an ellipse or a rectangle. In order to get in a single instance at the determinate shape of the original we would have to know the individual method by which, e.g., a particular ellipse is projected into the circle before me. The case of ordinary language is quite analogous. If the facts of reality are the ellipses and rectangles on plane I the subject-predicate and relational forms correspond to the circles and squares in plane II. These forms are the norms of our particular language into which we project in ever so many different ways ever so many different logical forms. And for this very reason we can draw no conclusions - except very vague ones-from the use of these . . ."

p. 165

". . . norms as to the actual logical form of the phenomena described."


[Here he makes an interesting move, suggesting that the way propositions depict could happen in at least two ways, either a form of projection of what occurs in reality onto a theoretical or intellectual field or plane via certain principles or mechanisms of connection (as in using a system of lines to recreate the forms of reality in the mind's eye) or in terms of establishing arbitrary relations of objects on one plane with those on the other. Interestingly, this latter has much affinity for his later view that language has its rules, its grammar, which determine how we will represent things within it. Already with this notion of assigning values to one set of objects that relate them to another set, he seems to have touched on the mechanism that will later inform his understanding of language and its role in how we think about things.]


p. 167

"One shade of colour cannot simultaneously have two different degrees of brightness or redness, a tone not two different strengths, etc. And the important point here is that these remarks do not express an experience but are in some sense tautologies. Every one of us knows that in ordinary life. If someone asks us 'What is the temperature outside?' and we said 'Eighty degrees', and now he were to ask us again, 'And is it ninety degrees?' we should answer, 'I told you it was eighty.' We take the statement of a degree (of temperature, for instance) to be a complete description which needs no supplementation. Thus, when asked, we say what the time is, and not also what it isn't."

[Here I would say he seems to be overlooking a fact that he would see later: One can ask about the same thing in many different senses. For instance, one could say it is 80 degrees and mean by this that it feels like 80 degrees (it's a dry heat with a brisk wind, say) or that "this particular instrument" reports it thus, or that it is about 80 degrees if, say, 80 is the closest to the actual measurement when rounding up or down. Any of these statements could be what is meant by a claim that "it is 80 degrees", after all, in which case asking for further elucidation in terms of the possibility of whether it might not actually be 90 degrees is no longer quite so absurd. ("Well it may feel like 80 to you but the thermometer says it's actually 90 degrees!") Of course the Wittgenstein who wrote this paper (though perhaps not the one who tossed it) would ascribe such variations to the inherent ambiguities of ordinary language which he is still, in the context of this paper at any rate, suggesting needs to be got rid of. Perhaps then it was his realization of problems like this that actually persuaded him to decide this paper was worthless?]


"As I could describe the contents of my pocket by saying 'It contains a penny, a shilling two keys, and nothing else'. This 'and nothing less' is the supplementary statement which completes the description. But this will not do as an analysis of a statement of degree."

[It will and it won't.]

p. 168

"the atomic statement must have the same multiplicity as the degree which it attributes, whence it follows that numbers must enter the forms of atomic propositions."

[That is a particularly interesting remark considering that so many of the problems ascribed to the Tractatus are often seen to hinge on discovering just what really are atomic propositions!]


"The mutual exclusion of unanalyzable statements of degree contradicts an opinion which was published by me several years ago and which necessitated that atomic propositions could not exclude one another. I here deliberately say 'exclude' and not 'contradict', for
there is a difference between these two notions, and atomic propositions, although they cannot contradict, may exclude one another."

[Here we find in a paper he later rejected an explicit rejection of his still earlier work in the Tractatus!]

Commencing on p. 169

". . . the logical product of these propositions will put them both there at once, and this leads to a collision, a mutual exclusion of these terms. How does this exclusion represent itself in symbolism? We can write the logical product of the two propositions, p and q, in this way : -

p /q /
T T T
T F F
F T F
F F F

What happens if these two propositions are R P T and B P T?


[R=one color, B=a different color, P = a particular place and T = a particular time such that RPT means something like "red is in this place at this time" and "blue is in this place at this time. He is making the point of exclusion, that given two different colors, they cannot both be in the same place at the same time logically, therefore they are mutually exclusive. However, one might still wonder why not? After all, what if red and blue are hard to distinguish? My wife and I own a car which she selected based on its color which is listed by the manufacturer as sea blue. To me it looks green, at least in most lights but to her it always looks blue, or so she says. What if R were to signify blue and B to signify green in the sense of this car? Could we say that the colors are now mutually exclusive? Well perhaps that isn't quite what he means since red and blue are a great deal more distinct than green and blue. Let's grant, then, that R and B work precisely as he proposes in the paper and that ordinary language uses aren't really relevant here. He goes on:]


In this case the top line ' T T T ' must disappear, as it represents an impossible combination.

[That is, if they are indeed mutually exclusive, then both statements cannot be true and their combination be true. He continues:]

The true possibilities here are-

RPT / BPT
T F
F T
F F

That is to say, there is no logical product of R P T and B P T in the first sense, and herein lies the exclusion as opposed to a contradiction. The contradiction, if it existed, would have to be written-

RPT / BPT /
T T F
T F F
F T F
F F F

but this is nonsense, as the top line, 'T T F,' gives the proposition a greater logical multiplicity than that of the actual possibilities.

[Here we have a window into what he meant by "nonsense", a subject of discussion here not too long ago. In this case, it's pretty clear that by "nonsense" he meant a term or proposition that could not conceivably express a possibility. If the upper line were a possibility (that both statements could be true but their combination false), it would not be nonsense. But since it isn't, it is. But suppose that RPT means the color of my car was blue and that BPT that it's green. And suppose that the actual color is such that it appears differently in different lighting and that my wife and I were observing it from different locations. Under that circumstance, would we want to say that it is either blue or green? Perhaps it is a third color with an entirely different name whose remarkable feature is that it can look different when viewed from different perspectives. Couldn't we then say that the first proposition isn't nonsense at all since the revelation that the car can be either color makes it, in fact, neither? Now it can be argued that this isn't what the logic is about since I have introduced new facts here, facts that take us beyond the narrow case Wittgenstein was describing. But then isn't that precisely the way language works? Isn't that what Wittgenstein's rejection of this paper seems to be picking up, especially in light of the fact that it is just such attention to ordinary language and actual usages that characterizes his later work? He continues:]

It is, of course, a deficiency of our notation that it does not prevent the formation of such nonsensical constructions, and a perfect notation will have to exclude such structures by definite rules of syntax. These will have to tell us that in the case of certain kinds of atomic propositions described in terms of definite symbolic features certain combinations of the T's and F's must be left out. Such rules, however, cannot be laid down until we have actually reached the ultimate analysis of the phenomena in
question. This, as we all know, has not yet been achieved.

[Here he returns to the Russellian voice that we find in Logical Atomism (four essays based on actual lectures prepared and published by Russell). As Russell would repeatedly say things like, we don't really know this, we can't really say that, we have to aim at such and such but no one has yet succeeded, etc., etc., so Wittgenstein ends on such a note. But how satisfactory is a philosophy that endlessly points but never hits its mark? I would suggest that Wittgenstein came to see this and that it is just such considerations that pushed him further and further from his old manner of thinking. -- SWM]

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[Wittrs] Wittgenstein's 1929 Paper and His Metamorphosis in Thought [message #5209 is a reply to message #5205] Tue, 20 July 2010 22:19 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Sean Wilson is currently offline  Sean Wilson
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(replying to Stuart who replied to Walter. Changed the subject heading,
accordingly)

Stuart.

Regarding what the junked-1929 paper has to do with the evolution Wittgenstein's
thought, and about his abandonment of the picture-theory of language, Monk has
the following to say.

" 'Some Remarks on Logical Form' is nonetheless interesting as a record of a
transitory phase in the development of Wittgenstein's philosophy -- a phase in
which the logical edifice of the Tractatus, though crumbling, had not yet been
demolished altogether. The paper can be seen as an attempt to answer the
criticisms made by Frank Ramsey of Wittgenstein's discussion of colour-exclusion
in the Tractatus. Ramsey's objections were first raised in his review of the
Tractatus; no doubt they had been explored further in the discussions between
the two in the first two terms of 1929.

In proposition 6.375 of the Tractatus Wittgenstein had insisted: "Just as the
only necessity that exists is logical necessity, so too the only impossibility
that exists in logical impossibility,' and had gone in on in the following
proposition to apply this to the impossibility of something's being, say, both
red and blue:

'... the simultaneous presence of two colours at the same place in the visual
field is impossible, in fact, logically impossible, since it is ruled out by the
logical structure of colour.'

The problem here is that, if this is so, then the statement 'This is red' cannot
be an atomic proposition. In the Tractatus it is claimed that atomic
propositions are logically independent of one another, with 'This is red' quite
clearly NOT being independent of 'This is blue:' the truth of one implies the
falsehood of the other. Thus, ascriptions of colour have to be
complex, susceptible to further analysis. In the Tractatus Wittgenstein had
appealed to the analysis of colour in terms of the velocities of particles as a
way out of this difficulty. Thus, the impossibility of something's being both
red and blue appears as the following contradiction: 'a particle cannot have two
velocities at the same time; that is to say, it cannot be in two places at the
same time.' But, as Ramsey insisted, even at this level of analysis the problem
reappears:

'... even supposing that the physicist thus provides an analysis of what we mean
by 'red,' Mr. Wittgenstein is only reducing the difficulty to that of the
necessary properties of space, time, and matter or the ether. He explicitly
makes it depend on the IMPOSSIBILITY of a particle being in two places at the
same time.'

And it is still hard to see, says Ramsey, how this can be a matter of logic
rather than of physics.

Ramsey's remarks thus presented Wittgenstein with a challenge: he must either
show how the properties of space, time and matter can appear as
logical necessities, or provide an alternative account of colour-expression. In
'Some Remarks on Logical Form,' Wittgenstein chose the latter.

He now abandons the claim that atomic propositions are independent; the truth of
one can indeed imply the falsity of another, and 'This is both red and blue' is,
therefore, 'ruled out.' But if this is so, then there is something seriously
amiss with the analysis of the rules of logical form that was offered in the
Tractatus. For, by the Tractatus rules, such constructions are ruled out only if
they can be analysed in to forms such as 'p and not-p', which can be shown to be
contradictory by the Truth-Table Method. The paper therefore ends on a
problematic note:

'It is, of course, a deficiency of our notation that it does not prevent the
formation of such nonsensical constructions, and a perfect notation will have to
exclude such structures by definite rules of syntax... Such rules, however,
cannot be laid down until we have actually reached the ultimate analysis of the
phenomena in question. This, we all know, has not yet been achieved.'

In the work written during the following year Wittgenstein made some attempt to
provide 'the ultimate analysis of the phenomena in question,' and for this short
period his work became, as he described it, a kind of phenomenology. Prompted by
his discussions with Sraffa, however, he soon gave up the attempt to repair the
structure of the Tractatus, and abandoned altogether the idea that there HAD to
be a commonality of structure between the world and language. Indeed, the point
he abandoned it is perhaps the point at which he decided he could not read this
paper before the conference. For the paper does not present the solution to
the problem raised by Ramsey so much as an admission that, within the terms of
the Tractatus, Wittgenstein had no solution.

PAGES 273-274.


Regards and thanks.


Dr. Sean Wilson, Esq.
Assistant Professor
Wright State University
Personal Website: http://seanwilson.org
SSRN papers: http://ssrn.com/author=596860
New Discussion Groups! http://ludwig.squarespace.com/discussionfora/



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[Wittrs] Re: Wittgenstein's 1929 Paper and His Metamorphosis in Thought [message #5210 is a reply to message #5209] Tue, 20 July 2010 23:36 Go to previous messageGo to next message
SWMirsky is currently offline  SWMirsky
Messages: 188
Registered: August 2009
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--- In Wittrs@yahoogroups.com, Sean Wilson <whoooo26505@...> wrote:
>
> (replying to Stuart who replied to Walter. Changed the subject heading,
> accordingly)

> <snip>

>
> In the work written during the following year Wittgenstein made some attempt to
> provide 'the ultimate analysis of the phenomena in question,' and for this short
> period his work became, as he described it, a kind of phenomenology. Prompted by
> his discussions with Sraffa, however, he soon gave up the attempt to repair the
> structure of the Tractatus, and abandoned altogether the idea that there HAD to
> be a commonality of structure between the world and language. Indeed, the point
> he abandoned it is perhaps the point at which he decided he could not read this
> paper before the conference. For the paper does not present the solution to
> the problem raised by Ramsey so much as an admission that, within the terms of
> the Tractatus, Wittgenstein had no solution.
>

> PAGES 273-274.

Thanks Sean. An interesting post (I've snipped most of it above, of course, in keeping with what I take to be your continuing rule, etc.). I note that you (or is it Monk?) point out that there is this period in Wittgenstein's early return to Cambridge where he is still struggling to defend (patch the holes in) the Tractatus. That is, he has clearly in this period NOT moved on as yet. I seem to recall that you once argued that Wittgenstein returned to Cambridge in '29 with entirely new ideas a-borning, even if it took him a while to articulate them to his own satisfaction. And yet isn't this evidence that that was not the case? After all, here he is still fighting the battles of the Tractatus and still doing philosophy in the standard Cambridge way of the time, and in the way he had, himself, engaged in it while under Russell's earlier tutelage and in the course of writing the Tractatus.

So this would seem to support my view that Wittgenstein went through a period of transition, that his new ideas were as yet not fully formed even while the old ideas still hung on with him. I had argued that the Blue and Brown Books were still a part of that transition and that Rush Rhees' introduction to that volume supported this interpretation.

Anyway it would be especially interesting, I think, to compare the early and later thought across a range of issues (language, logic, grammar, picturing, showing vs. telling, etc.). There are lots of folks who focus on the Tractatus and lots who focus on the Investigations. But since he, himself, is on record as saying that the Investigations represents a movement away from the earlier work and its "grave errors", maybe we ought to explore that movement and maybe we can do that here by considering some of these interim works, though they be of manifestly lesser import. To that end I think your retitling of this thread is right on target. (I had actually intended to do that myself but hit the send button too quickly when the time came.)

SWM

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[Wittrs] [quickphilosophy] Re: Wittgenstein's 1929 Paper and His Metamorphosis in Thought [message #5212 is a reply to message #5209] Wed, 21 July 2010 06:57 Go to previous messageGo to next message
walto is currently offline  walto
Messages: 91
Registered: January 2010
Member


--- In quickphilosophy@yahoogroups.com, Sean Wilson <whoooo26505@...> wrote:
>
> (replying to Stuart who replied to Walter. Changed the subject heading,
> accordingly)
>
> Stuart.
>
> Regarding what the junked-1929 paper has to do with the evolution Wittgenstein's
> thought, and about his abandonment of the picture-theory of language, Monk has
> the following to say.
>
> " 'Some Remarks on Logical Form' is nonetheless interesting as a record of a
> transitory phase in the development of Wittgenstein's philosophy -- a phase in
> which the logical edifice of the Tractatus, though crumbling, had not yet been
> demolished altogether. The paper can be seen as an attempt to answer the
> criticisms made by Frank Ramsey of Wittgenstein's discussion of colour-exclusion
> in the Tractatus. Ramsey's objections were first raised in his review of the
> Tractatus; no doubt they had been explored further in the discussions between
> the two in the first two terms of 1929.
>
> In proposition 6.375 of the Tractatus Wittgenstein had insisted: "Just as the
> only necessity that exists is logical necessity, so too the only impossibility
> that exists in logical impossibility,' and had gone in on in the following
> proposition to apply this to the impossibility of something's being, say, both
> red and blue:
>
> '... the simultaneous presence of two colours at the same place in the visual
> field is impossible, in fact, logically impossible, since it is ruled out by the
> logical structure of colour.'
>
> The problem here is that, if this is so, then the statement 'This is red' cannot
> be an atomic proposition. In the Tractatus it is claimed that atomic
> propositions are logically independent of one another, with 'This is red' quite
> clearly NOT being independent of 'This is blue:' the truth of one implies the
> falsehood of the other. Thus, ascriptions of colour have to be
> complex, susceptible to further analysis. In the Tractatus Wittgenstein had
> appealed to the analysis of colour in terms of the velocities of particles as a
> way out of this difficulty. Thus, the impossibility of something's being both
> red and blue appears as the following contradiction: 'a particle cannot have two
> velocities at the same time; that is to say, it cannot be in two places at the
> same time.' But, as Ramsey insisted, even at this level of analysis the problem
> reappears:
>
> '... even supposing that the physicist thus provides an analysis of what we mean
> by 'red,' Mr. Wittgenstein is only reducing the difficulty to that of the
> necessary properties of space, time, and matter or the ether. He explicitly
> makes it depend on the IMPOSSIBILITY of a particle being in two places at the
> same time.'
>
> And it is still hard to see, says Ramsey, how this can be a matter of logic
> rather than of physics.
>
> Ramsey's remarks thus presented Wittgenstein with a challenge: he must either
> show how the properties of space, time and matter can appear as
> logical necessities, or provide an alternative account of colour-expression. In
> 'Some Remarks on Logical Form,' Wittgenstein chose the latter.
>
> He now abandons the claim that atomic propositions are independent; the truth of
> one can indeed imply the falsity of another, and 'This is both red and blue' is,
> therefore, 'ruled out.'


Is it actually clear from "Remarks on Logical Form" that W actually took that route, and not that of simply denying that "This is red" is an example of an atomic prop? I mean, I agree that the main purpose of that paper is to see what to do about the apparent contradiction of "X is all red at t and X is all green at t" but there are two ways out here if we decide they're actually contradictory. We can say, as Monk suggests, that atomic props are not really independent or we can just deny that those are good examples of atomic props. It seems like there's quite a bit in the NBs and TLP that suggests that W was unwilling to give any examples of atomic props and of denying that it's necessary to do so.







But if this is so, then there is something seriously
> amiss with the analysis of the rules of logical form that was offered in the
> Tractatus. For, by the Tractatus rules, such constructions are ruled out only if
> they can be analysed in to forms such as 'p and not-p', which can be shown to be
> contradictory by the Truth-Table Method. The paper therefore ends on a
> problematic note:
>
> 'It is, of course, a deficiency of our notation that it does not prevent the
> formation of such nonsensical constructions, and a perfect notation will have to
> exclude such structures by definite rules of syntax... Such rules, however,
> cannot be laid down until we have actually reached the ultimate analysis of the
> phenomena in question. This, we all know, has not yet been achieved.'


That again suggests that W's position at the time was not that atomic props are not independent but that 'this is red' is not atomic.


>
> In the work written during the following year Wittgenstein made some attempt to
> provide 'the ultimate analysis of the phenomena in question,' and for this short
> period his work became, as he described it, a kind of phenomenology. Prompted by
> his discussions with Sraffa, however, he soon gave up the attempt to repair the
> structure of the Tractatus, and abandoned altogether the idea that there HAD to
> be a commonality of structure between the world and language. Indeed, the point
> he abandoned it is perhaps the point at which he decided he could not read this
> paper before the conference. For the paper does not present the solution to
> the problem raised by Ramsey so much as an admission that, within the terms of
> the Tractatus, Wittgenstein had no solution.
>
> PAGES 273-274.
>
>
> Regards and thanks.
>
>
> Dr. Sean Wilson, Esq.


Thanks a lot for reproducing that. Great stuff.

Walto










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[Wittrs] Re: Wittgenstein's 1929 Paper and His Metamorphosis in Thought [message #5218 is a reply to message #5210] Wed, 21 July 2010 12:21 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Sean Wilson is currently offline  Sean Wilson
Messages: 793
Registered: August 2009
Location: Form of Life
Senior Member

Stuart:

You misunderstand my (Monk's) position. Check out the discussion board if you
need refreshed.

If we were to draw lines in Wittgenstein's metamorphosis, his 1929 return to
Cambridge was a transitional period, evidenced by the remarks on logical form
and Philosophical Remarks. The fall term at Cambridge, 1930, marks the second
coming, if you go by the lecture material that he begins to present. The
material he endorses here will work its way into the Big Typescript (and
Philosophical Grammar), which come out in 32 I believe. J's position earlier on
was that he would draw the line at the date of publishing of this work. (I
thought that in error; it should be the date he begins teaching it -- as Monk
appropriately captures).

Line drawing is very difficult for things like pregnancy. It's the same here.

1st trimester -- Tractatus through 28
2nd trimester -- return to Cambridge, 1929, through the winter and spring
quarters of 1930.
3rd trimester -- fall quarter of 1930 till death.

If it were a football game and you wanted to make four quarters, you might split
the last segment accordingly:

4th -- philosophy of psychology and such 1944 onward.

(I don't really do this, because these are additions, not a fundamental change
in the creature. They aren't really at "metamorphosis." It's like putting in a
different part of the engine.)


Dr. Sean Wilson, Esq.
Assistant Professor
Wright State University
Personal Website: http://seanwilson.org
SSRN papers: http://ssrn.com/author=596860
New Discussion Groups! http://ludwig.squarespace.com/discussionfora/



==========================================

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[Wittrs] Re: Wittgenstein's 1929 Paper and His Metamorphosis in Thought [message #5219 is a reply to message #5218] Wed, 21 July 2010 13:11 Go to previous messageGo to next message
SWMirsky is currently offline  SWMirsky
Messages: 188
Registered: August 2009
Senior Member
--- In Wittrs@yahoogroups.com, Sean Wilson <whoooo26505@...> wrote:
>
> Stuart:
>
> You misunderstand my (Monk's) position. Check out the discussion board if you
> need refreshed.
>

Well that is always possible, as is the possibility that you misunderstood mine at the time. As I recall, I was not arguing that there was a precise diving line but that there was a transitional period represented by the intervening years between his return to Cambridge and his subsequent work after he had been there for a time. And I was making the point that when confronted by claims he made in the earler and transitional material with claims he made in later, more developed works like the Investigations, we must give precedence to the latter since the work during the earlier periods reflected his as yet developing thoughts and had not yet settled into a firm and clearly explained (by him) set of positions. I remember wondering at the time why you were taking exception to my points about the Blue Book in relation to that since it seemed our positions were not so different.

Insofar, therefore, as they are not, then it seems to me one of us certainly misunderstood the other. Perhaps it was me.


> If we were to draw lines in Wittgenstein's metamorphosis, his 1929 return to
> Cambridge was a transitional period, evidenced by the remarks on logical form
> and Philosophical Remarks. The fall term at Cambridge, 1930, marks the second
> coming, if you go by the lecture material that he begins to present. The
> material he endorses here will work its way into the Big Typescript (and
> Philosophical Grammar), which come out in 32 I believe.


Yes, changes were already evident.


> J's position earlier on
> was that he would draw the line at the date of publishing of this work. (I
> thought that in error; it should be the date he begins teaching it -- as Monk
> appropriately captures).
>

I don't see much reason to disagree however I still hold to my position that his new ideas were in a transitional phase, not fully realized nor adequately expressed and, thus, there is strong argument NOT to allow readings in the transitional material to dominate our understanding of the mature Wittgenstein's positions.


> Line drawing is very difficult for things like pregnancy. It's the same here.
>

?

> 1st trimester -- Tractatus through 28
> 2nd trimester -- return to Cambridge, 1929, through the winter and spring
> quarters of 1930.
> 3rd trimester -- fall quarter of 1930 till death.
>

I think you are right to recognize a different way of thinking manifesting itself as early as 1930 but wrong to suppose (if that is your intention) that the work of 1930 was as definitive as the work of his later years in representing his ideas and insights. Even Rhees notes that the Blue Book is less clear and less developed than the Brown Book and that the Brown Book less so than the Investigations (of which Wittgenstein seems to have thought to develop from the manuscript of the Brown Book for a period of time before abandoning it and starting again).


> If it were a football game and you wanted to make four quarters, you might split
> the last segment accordingly:
>
> 4th -- philosophy of psychology and such 1944 onward.
>
> (I don't really do this, because these are additions, not a fundamental change
> in the creature. They aren't really at "metamorphosis." It's like putting in a
> different part of the engine.)
>
>

I think it's pretty clear he made a radical change between the Tractatus and the Investigations though the work of the interim period is more transitional and progressive as he moves toward the definitive expression of his later thinking.

SWM

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Re: [Wittrs] Re: Wittgenstein's 1929 Paper and His Metamorphosis in Thought [message #5560 is a reply to message #5219] Tue, 07 September 2010 23:57 Go to previous messageGo to next message
RetroDeathRow is currently offline  RetroDeathRow
Messages: 56
Registered: January 2010
Location: Texas
Member
I simply don't understand this talk at all. When did LW reject the TLP? In the TLP. I mean, that is the conclusion, right? The whole book is nonsense. He obviously didn't think preaching that 1+1=2 was much of a career. And that is what he says in the TLP- tautologies are nonsense and the propositions of logic are tautological. Thus, what can be said on logic? Well, he has some remark in a notebook about walking out of the pages of the TLP. Did he live a wonderful life? Such would be nonsense as a question.

He does outline a correct way of philosophizing in the TLP. In some ways, the TLP is an expression of that outline. The PI might be a another expression of it (a better tautology?). Was his life a tautology for the living?

The point is, I only see people who don't understand (or care to understand) the TLP constantly stating "Ya know, LW rejected the TLP". Yeah, the rejection is in the TLP. To shew a fly out of the fly bottle, you gotta show him the fly bottle so that he knows how to navigate. And yes, the fly bottle is actually irrelevant to getting out; to the fly, his wings matter and the map helps.

But enough of the rampant metaphors. We don't fly, flies do. People wake up and people go to sleep. And other things nobody would disagree with. Well, wolves eat lambs, too. And wolves fight each other for whatever reason, and lambs follow the Shepard for whatever reason. Serpents wait motionlessly before striking with a fatal bite.

...and the nonsense continues.


He had a wonderful life.
Re: [Wittrs] Re: Wittgenstein's 1929 Paper and His Metamorphosis in Thought [message #5561 is a reply to message #5219] Tue, 07 September 2010 23:58 Go to previous message
RetroDeathRow is currently offline  RetroDeathRow
Messages: 56
Registered: January 2010
Location: Texas
Member
I simply don't understand this talk at all. When did LW reject the TLP? In the TLP. I mean, that is the conclusion, right? The whole book is nonsense. He obviously didn't think preaching that 1+1=2 was much of a career. And that is what he says in the TLP- tautologies are nonsense and the propositions of logic are tautological. Thus, what can be said on logic? Well, he has some remark in a notebook about walking out of the pages of the TLP. Did he live a wonderful life? Such would be nonsense as a question.

He does outline a correct way of philosophizing in the TLP. In some ways, the TLP is an expression of that outline. The PI might be a another expression of it (a better tautology?). Was his life a tautology for the living?

The point is, I only see people who don't understand (or care to understand) the TLP constantly stating "Ya know, LW rejected the TLP". Yeah, the rejection is in the TLP. To shew a fly out of the fly bottle, you gotta show him the fly bottle so that he knows how to navigate. And yes, the fly bottle is actually irrelevant to getting out; to the fly, his wings matter and the map helps.

But enough of the rampant metaphors. We don't fly, flies do. People wake up and people go to sleep. And other things nobody would disagree with. Well, wolves eat lambs, too. And wolves fight each other for whatever reason, and lambs follow the Shepard for whatever reason. Serpents wait motionlessly before striking with a fatal bite.

...and the nonsense continues.


He had a wonderful life.
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