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This collection of new essays deals with the relationship between Wittgenstein's life and his philosophy. The first two essays reflect on general problems inherent in philosophical biography itself. The essays that follow draw on recently published letters as well as recently published diaries from the 1930s to explore Wittgenstein's background as an engineer and its relation to the Tractatus, the impact of his schizoid personality on his approach to philosophy, his role as a diarist, letter-writer and polemicist, and finally the complex issue of Wittgenstein as a Jew.
Editor's preface James C. Klagge; Part I. Biography and Philosophy: 1. Philosophical biography: the very idea Ray Monk; 2. Philosophy and biography James Conant; Part II. Wittgenstein; 3. Wittgenstein and the mind's eye Kelly Hamilton; 4. 'Deep Disquietudes': reflections on Wittgenstein as anti-philosopher Louis Sass; 5. The sleepy philosopher: how to read Wittgenstein's diaries Alfred Nordmann; 6. Letters from a philosopher Joachim Schulte; 7. Wittgenstein and reason Hans-Johann Glock; 8. Wittgenstein and Jewishness Brian McGuinness; 9. Was Wittgenstein a Jew? David Stern.