Philosophy 79 (3):363-391 (2004)

David Wiggins
Oxford University
The paper seeks to interpret and then to criticize Wittgenstein's Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus paragraph 6.4 to 7, connecting this so-called mystical section with the “Lecture on Ethics” given in Cambridge in 1929, the Notebooks, and a passage in the Big Typescript. Interpretive and critical efforts focus on the claims: that if having intrinsic value, good or evil, is nothing zufällig, then its basis is nothing in the world; that value can only enter through the willing subject; that “how things are in the world is a matter of indifference for what is higher”. Concerning, it is proposed that the zufällig is here that which simply or merely happens. The argument for rests on Wittgenstein's misconception of the categorical. It is remarked that and result in a philosophy of life that is unliveable. Witness the travails of Wittgenstein's own life and his struggle to “get over a particular fact”. Finally will even undermine, which is in any case fatally ambiguous. In conclusion, it is suggested that both the stresses and strains that are induced within the Tractatus itself by its circumscription of the sayable and the difficulties of can be overcome within Wittgenstein's later philosophy, but in ways already prefigured in the doctrine of “showing” as that appears in both Tractatus and “Lecture on Ethics”.
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DOI 10.1017/s0031819104000324
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‘Ethics is Transcendental’.Jordi Fairhurst - 2021 - Journal of the American Philosophical Association 7 (3):348-367.

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