David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Journal of Philosophical Research 31:277-294 (2006)
In both the Tractatus and the Investigations, Wittgenstein claimed that the aim of philosophy is to achieve clarity: to see clearly the logic or grammar of our language. However, his view of clarity underwent an important change, one of many changes that led Wittgenstein to write, in the preface to the Investigations, that his new ideas “could be seen in the right light only by contrast with and against the background of my old way of thinking.” I argue that certain “grave mistakes” of the Tractatus were due to an idealised conception of clarity, and that a revised understanding of clarity is one of the main achievements of the Investigations. In the Tractatus Wittgenstein wrongly assumed that when we see language clearly, what we see will be determinate, exact, and complete. In the Investigations he realised that when we see language clearly we cannot specify in advance whether what we see will be determinate or vague, exact or inexact, complete or incomplete. I characterise this insight as a truism: when we see clearly, what we see might not be clear. Wittgenstein wants the Tractatus to serve as a warning to the reader of the Investigations; his own past mistakes are instructive and this is why we should read the Investigations against the background of his old way of thinking.
|Keywords||Ludwig Wittgenstein Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus Philosophical Investigations clarity logic grammar language|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Alfred Nordmann (2005). Wittgenstein's Tractatus: An Introduction. Cambridge University Press.
Daniele Mezzadri (2010). Language and Logic in Wittgenstein's Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus. Dissertation, University of Stirling
Robert Hanna (2010). From Referentialism to Human Action: The Augustinian Theory of Language. In Arif Ahmed (ed.), Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations: A Critical Guide. Cambridge University Press.
William Child (2011/2010). Wittgenstein. Routledge.
Timothy D. Knepper (2009). Ineffability Investigations: What the Later Wittgenstein has to Offer to the Study of Ineffability. [REVIEW] International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 65 (2):65 - 76.
E. D. Klemke (1971). Essays on Wittgenstein. Urbana,University of Illinois Press.
Denis McManus (2006/2010). The Enchantment of Words: Wittgenstein's Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus. Oxford University Press.
Ludwig Wittgenstein (2006). The Wittgenstein Reader. Blackwell Pub..
Dawn M. Phillips (2007). Complete Analysis and Clarificatory Analysis in Wittgenstein's Tractatus. In Michael Beaney (ed.), The Analytic Turn: Analysis in Early Analytic Philosophy and Phenomenology. Routledge. 164.
Added to index2010-03-13
Total downloads14 ( #120,449 of 1,101,888 )
Recent downloads (6 months)3 ( #128,836 of 1,101,888 )
How can I increase my downloads?