The Blue and Brown Books

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The best The Blue and Brown Books Author Ludwig Wittgenstein Rush Rhees is Eb

The best The Blue and Brown Books Author Ludwig Wittgenstein Rush Rhees is Ebook Ludwig Josef Johann Wittgenstein 26 April 1889 29 April 1951 was an Austrian British philosopher who worked primarily in logic, the philosophy of mathematics, the philosophy of mind, and the philosophy of language.Described by Bertrand Russell as the most perfect example I have ever known of genius as traditionally conceived, passionate, profound, intense, and dominating , he helped inspire two of the twentieth century s principal philosophical movements the Vienna Circle and Oxford ordinary language philosophy According to an end of the century poll, professional philosophers in Canada and the U.S rank both his Tractatus Logico Philosophicus and Philosophical Investigations among the top five most important books in twentieth century philosophy, the latter standing out as e one crossover masterpiece in twentieth century philosophy, appealing across diverse specializations and philosophical orientations Wittgenstein s influence has been felt in nearly every field of the humanities and social sciences, yet there are widely diverging interpretations of his thought.. These works, as the subtitle makes clear, are unfinished sketches for Philosophical Investigations, among the most important influential philosophical work of modern times The Blue Book is a set of notes dictated to Witgenstein s Cambridge students in 1933 34 The Brown Book was a draft for what eventually became the growth of the first part of Philosophical InvThese works, as the subtitle makes clear, are unfinished sketches for Philosophical Investigations, among the most important influential philosophical work of modern times The Blue Book is a set of notes dictated to Witgenstein s Cambridge students in 1933 34 The Brown Book was a draft for what eventually became the growth of the first part of Philosophical Investigations This book reveals the germination growth of the ideas which found their final expression in Witgenstein s later work It s indispensable therefore to students of Witgenstein s thought to all those who wish to study at firsthand the mental processes of a thinker who fundamentally changed the course of modern philosophy.PrefaceThe Blue BookThe Brown BookIndex. The best Book The Blue and Brown Books These studies and the work they gave rise to, Philosophical Investigations, are commonly understood as a refutation of the author's previous major work, Tractatus Logic-Philosophic us. I didn't read the Blue and Brown Books as a refutation, as much as a correction, of the system of thought at work in the Tractatus. That earlier work, as I read it, contained some troublingly bizarre implications and assumptions. It at times seemed to me that Wittgenstein was implying that linguistic information, being understood, could not be refuted- as if our ideas about things never change, or as if a statement could never be doubted- as if lying (on one hand) or misunderstanding (on the other) were not common occurrences, and if we shouldn't then, take such situations into consideration when interrogating the nature of communication and knowledge. The Blue and Brown Books brilliantly address such concerns about the line of thought at work in the Tractatus. If we are to understand the workings of language, Wittgenstein argues, we must not ask “what does 'x' mean?” but rather “how does 'x' mean?” Signs, Wittgenstein asserts, can only operate according to the rules a linguistic system imposes. Unfortunately, the rules of our grammar have the effect of misleading us as to language's real nature. Our grammar constantly operates metaphorically. The metaphors are so omni-present that we speakers have come to take them as literal identifiers. The statement “I think of 'x',” implies that the sign is a translation of something in our heads that exists analogously to the sign. We users of language are thus led to believe there must be an intermediary step between thought and expression. Thus, grammar leads us to believe that we can apply a term such as “similar” to what our very language designates as different. To use a simple example, Wittgenstein points out that what language designates as “different” colors- torqouis, ocean, blue-green, are commonly considered “similar” in that they are sub-categories of “blue.” This implies that there is a unifying concept of “blue” that exists in thought prior to expression. Language then, seeks to express the “thought”- the static, abstract truth that precedes it, and this manifests itself in the metaphysical impulse in philosophy. In place of this inherently futile project, Wittgenstein prescribes replacing our concept of “thought” with the expression itself, the sign. Our statements, rather than attempts to give socialized form to some inner, spiritual truth, some inference to knowledge, are rather descriptions of knowledge. Words describe what can be known by revealing themselves. Of course, words have no concrete, changeless meaning. They demonstrate their meaning within their contextual use, just as the move of a chess piece across a board has one special significance within its context within an individual match. Thought, the use of language, can describe the way it functions but it can never explain why it functions the way that it does. The question remains, however, how language, which demonstrates its functionality through its very implementation, can be used to intentionally mislead about things other than its own nature. Wittgenstein's radical response is that lying isn't altogether possible in the sense of completely misleading another person. A lye never completely misleads precisely because it is understood by the addressee, whether or not the addressee believes the statement to be true. No matter what the speaker's intention, they have necessarily revealed themselves to the addressee through the gesture of meaning that they perform. The speaker has made her/his “move.” To truly mislead the addressee, the speaker would have to adopt a private language- another inherently self-defeating project. Still, the fact remains that the term “lying” can be successfully implemented. What can we be referring to by describing a statement as a lye other than the way we feel when we make a statement we consider to be “untrue” as opposed to what we feel when we make a statement we consider to be “true”? Such feelings, and the gestures and tonalities that sometimes accompany them, Wittgenstein calls “modes of expression.” But these “feelings” these “truths behind the lies” can only be conveyed through more words. What, then, of the private- the emotional and sentimental? Where is their place in thought? Of these topics, it appears, we must remain silent. I rank the Books as a masterpiece of philosophical execution. They are magnificently inventive in their models. But I am not convinced that they are so groundbreaking. In switching his focus from the irrefutability of the understood to its implementation, it seems to me Wittgenstein presents a different perspective on the philosophical landscape of the Tractatus than an actually new landscape. Also, Wittgenstein essentially argues that meaning is composed of arbitrarily applied signifiers that attain meaning only within the systematic play of context. This sounds, to me, a lot like the ideas expounded in Saussure's Course in General Linguistics, published twenty years prior to the writing of these studies. However, in providing a clear and level-headed response to the question, “If language is the source of all knowledge, can thought still conceivably precede expression?” in the form of “conceivably, but not necessarily,” Wittgenstein provides a model of how to approach the subject that makes unnecessary the theoretical bickering over how to follow the implications of Saussure's work that characterized much of the “structuralist vs. post-structuralist” controversies.

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  • Ludwig Wittgenstein Rush Rhees Post author

    Ludwig Josef Johann Wittgenstein 26 April 1889 29 April 1951 was an Austrian British philosopher who worked primarily in logic, the philosophy of mathematics, the philosophy of mind, and the philosophy of language.Described by Bertrand Russell as the most perfect example I have ever known of genius as traditionally conceived, passionate, profound, intense, and dominating , he helped inspire two of the twentieth century s principal philosophical movements the Vienna Circle and Oxford ordinary language philosophy According to an end of the century poll, professional philosophers in Canada and the U.S rank both his Tractatus Logico Philosophicus and Philosophical Investigations among the top five most important books in twentieth century philosophy, the latter standing out as e one crossover masterpiece in twentieth century philosophy, appealing across diverse specializations and philosophical orientations Wittgenstein s influence has been felt in nearly every field of the humanities and social sciences, yet there are widely diverging interpretations of his thought.

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  • These studies and the work they gave rise to, Philosophical Investigations, are commonly understood as a refutation of the author s previous major work, Tractatus Logic Philosophic us I didn t read the Blue and Brown Books as a refutation, as much as a correction, of the system of thought at work in the Tractatus That earlier work, as I read it, contained some troublingly bizarre implications and assumptions It at times seemed to me that Wittgenstein was implying that linguistic information, bei [...]


  • Reading Wittgenstein put an end to my interest in philosophy If philosophy is about the kinds of language games that Wittgenstein played, it wasn t worth my time.


  • I suppose I should have read this before Philosophical Investigations, but this is still a worthy text on its own, and helps clarify some of the finer points of his intricate and complex ideas.Covers language and philosophy of mind well Need to reread P.I soon.


  • Unlike most graduate students I maintained a four year teaching assistantship inclusive of summers, most of it with one fellow, Bill Ellos Although I occasionally worked for others in the philosophy and linguistics departments, these were usually part time, supplements to my association with Bill Heck, I may have worked for or with him even during months when not formally assigned I certainly worked far hours for and with him than were mandated not that I knew anything of any time limit until t [...]


  • First off, let me say, I would not recommend this book to those who are just entering the world of philosophy If you re just getting into philosophy, this is not the book for you With that said, I believe that anyone who has a serious interest in the discipline can benefit from reading this book The Brown and Blue Books represent Wittgenstein s latter work, and acts as a good introduction to his Philosophical Investigations If you re looking for the thoughts of the early Wittgenstein, please ref [...]


  • These companion studies help with reading his organized Logical Investigations because they situate the reader with respect to the project What I have to say about these studies is not terribly important and maybe even inappropriate After all who reads the mood of a philosopher But every effort at essential definition seemed to bother LW a great deal Such definitions were the sort of thing after which Socrates was always asking But I cannot understand what it means when I am asked for that defi [...]


  • Precursors to the refined works published as the Philosophical Investigations, these Cambridge lectures for a counterpoint, see his Lectures on the Foundations of Mathematics reveal Wittgenstein s constant struggle to formulate the body of thought known as Wittgenstein II ie, all that which followed the Tractatus Logico Philosophicus Fascinating reading for anyone who enjoyed the PI, although neither here nor in that later tome can the WII program be said to be complete.



  • The Blue Book opens with the question, what is the meaning of a word When asking such general questions, we often define words by thinking of of solid, material objects, like pencils, chairs, and tables These words can be defined ostensively, by pointing to the object they denote We might then be tempted to think that the meaning of these words is the mental act of interpretation that connects the word with the thing it denotes Wittgenstein asserts that, contrary to conventional wisdom, the mean [...]


  • A fun illuminating romp through logic, language, philosophy It s true, this is no easy read some passages are awkwardly phrased and unnecessarily obscure, the flow from one topic to another is not always as smooth as you d like it to be, and you wonder what Wittgenstein is trying to do with all those language games, what his overarching point is But you sense him groping in the dark, trying to get at something important, and there are to be sure flashes of insight that will amaze you, or at leas [...]


  • These two books are difficult to read because Wittgenstein is unsystematic in his exploration He is reaching towards a kind of functionalism but he lacks the conception or the language to cogently describe the structures he reaches towards.For example, he introduces different cuts expecting that meaning should be somehow stabilized along the specific expressions But then he demonstrates that meaning has no ontological necessity in fact he highlights different modalities in which the sense of wha [...]


  • And I always thought Wittgenstein was just a stuck up rich kid.This book changed my definition of what a philosopher s aim OUGHT to do be Yes I said it OUGHT.This is largely known as a revision or re directing of his Tractatus, and it s interesting in a number of ways 1 A glimpse of how one can tends to modify one s philosophy throughout life essentially changing it, but not abandoning the general framework.2 Blue book is basically a less complex transcript of a lecture series Brown Book, a rig [...]


  • Some intriguing ideas here about meaning signs in language and thought, particularly the Blue book, though I wanted to like these books than I did Wittgenstein s thesis appears to be that language is a merely set of signs interwoven with our activity in the world, the meanings of which can only be defined by their use within the context and various associations of a language Then he beats the premise to death with dozens of language games to explore the problems with language as a set of repres [...]


  • Some of the best descriptions of words ever Many words in this sense then don t have a strict meaning But this is not a defect To think it is would be like saying that the light of my reading lamp is no real light at all because it has no sharp boundary He wrote the same thing in another elegant way in Philosophical Grammar There he compares the usefullness of words to the warmth you feel from a stove Maybe no real sharp boundary, but still really useful The difference between the relation of th [...]


  • Works with interesting concepts, and demolishes some very silly thinking about philosophy of language that people bring intuitively to the subject On the other hand, he s a bit than supportably behaviorist, and with annoying frequency he confuses something he can t find out with something Unknowable By Definition, ignoring that science has indeed taken what were once philosophical problems and turned them into experimentally answerable questions cog sci, quantum physics and relativity being esp [...]


  • Finished the Blue Book July 10th It kind of blew a lot of other philosophy out of the water I m obsessed with words and exact meanings, though, and so is he He just clarifies really well what we re really asking or feeling when we re philosophically puzzled.I am not quite smart enough to understand a lot of this But I think it s largely true.edit 8 4 09 Decided to skip the Brown Book You can only take so much of this stuff I suppose Still, I just procured a copy of the Investigations might give [...]


  • O que o sentido de uma palavra e assim come a este livro Nada f cil Tendo Wittgenstein come ado como matem tico fan tico da l gica totalmente demonstr vel, curioso acompanhar a sua evolu o para algo t o subjectivamente distinto, ou seja, Wittgenstein divaga muito sobre a linguagem, mas em simult neo real a o facto de que a abordagem de um problema matem tico, f sico, ou outro tem obrigatoriamente de ser feita utilizando palavras muito bem escolhidas Por vezes, palavras que parecem significar o m [...]


  • This is the perfect warm up to the Investigations I think a lot of the misunderstanding and lack of comprehension that a lot of people including several published, respectable scholars experience with PI is a direct result of their failure to start here All the main concepts language games, forms ogf life, etc are laid out in their earlier stages, and the break from his picture theory stuff in the Tractatus is made explicit.


  • I must be honest and say I did not finish this tome But I believe that any serious student of philosophy should start with this book as it deals with the core issues of the language we must use in any philosophical discourse and how easily we can be led astray by our choice of words At least this is how I saw it some 40 years ago.


  • I won t pretend to understand everything about Wittgenstein add to that the fact that this is my bedside read, meaning that I might have failed to grasp a lot especially in the moments that I fall asleep , but I guess this is a good start for one who wants to understand the transition from early to late Wittgenstein.


  • This book is a gold mine of philosophical ideas and questions on language The first part tackles the question, If life has a meaning, what would it look like I first read this in college but wasn t impressed by it until I really got into photography.


  • this was an excellent rec from alex temple never finished it, but what i read i completely loved makes you think about thinking in an amazingly precise way felt like a mathematician s thoughts high praise from me.




  • after reading the final word of this book, I closed the cover, sat the book on the table next to me, and wrote the first poem of what would become Dwelling Inspiring to a language weirdo like me.







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