Archive for the ‘Wittgenstein’ Category

Who is the greatest philosopher of all time? This is not a question to which we are likely to find a staightforward answer, but it remains an important one. The BBC ran a vote in 2005, and Karl Marx came out as the clear winner. But the list itself provdes a good starting point for […]


A useful section-by-section analysis of Wittgestein’s Philosophical Investigations can be found here.


Was Wittgenstein a behaviourist?  If not, why not?


As mentioned in a previous lesson, Wittgenstein is noted for having developed two distinct philosophies. In the early work (like the Tractatus) Wittgenstein tried to spell out precisely what a logically constructed language can (and cannot) be used to say. Its seven basic propositions simply state that language, thought, and reality share a common structure, […]


You might find this 1970s programme about Wittgenstein useful. They don’t make them like this any more, but perhaps they should. You can find parts 2, 3, 4 and 5 on YouTube.


Like Heidegger, Wittgenstein wants to show that scepticism about the external world does not make sense. How does he go about this? It is important to note that Wittgenstein is unusual among philosophers in having presented two significantly different philosophies (referred to as ‘early’ (Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, the only book published in his lifetime) and ‘late’ […]


Ludwig Wittgenstein was a higly influential 20th century philosopher. You can find out more about him at http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/wittgenstein/ .We’ll be loooking at his work in more detail next term. Here’s what he had to say about suicide: “If suicide is allowed then everything is allowed. If anything is not allowed then suicide is not allowed. […]