Wittgenstein / Edition 1

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This book offers a lucid and highly readable account of Wittgenstein's philosophy, framed against the background of his extraordinary life and character. Woven together with a biographical narrative, the chapters explain the key ideas of Wittgenstein's work, from his first book, the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, to his mature masterpiece, the Philosophical Investigations.

Severin Schroeder shows that at the core of Wittgenstein's later work lies a startlingly original and subversive conception of the nature of philosophy. In accordance with this conception, Wittgenstein offers no new philosophical doctrines to replace his earlier ones, but seeks to demonstrate how all philosophical theorizing is the result of conceptual misunderstanding. He first diagnoses such misunderstanding at the core of his own earlier philosophy of language and then subjects philosophical views and problems about various mental phenomena understanding, sensations, the will to a similar therapeutic analysis. Schroeder provides a clear and careful account of the main arguments offered by Wittgenstein. He concludes by considering some critical responses to Wittgenstein's work, assessing its legacy for contemporary philosophy.

Wittgenstein is ideal for students seeking a clear and concise introduction to the work of this seminal twentieth-century philosopher.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is an excellent new introduction to Wittgenstein. It ishighly recommendable for graduate students and advancedundergraduates. It is also highly recommendable for professionalphilosophers, since Schroeder is likely to challenge one's currentconception of Wittgenstein."
Brian Armstrong, Grazer PhilosophischeStudien

"This book is a truly impressive achievement … What isparticularly striking is the combination of three elements thathave rarely if ever been combined in such a forceful way: awell-informed and succinct presentation of the biographical andcultural context of Wittgenstein’s work, an exposition of hiscentral texts which combines lucid introduction with novelscholarship, and a dialectically astute discussion of thesubstantive philosophical issues."
Hans-Johann Glock, University of Zurich

"Dr Schroeder has written an excellent introduction toWittgenstein's philosophy. He surveys the Tractatus and theInvestigations with exemplary clarity and sweeps away recentmisinterpretations with decisive arguments. His careful andmethodical elucidations of the major themes in Wittgenstein's workwill greatly benefit students."
Peter Hacker, St John’s College, Oxford

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780745626161
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 4/10/2006
  • Series: Key Contemporary Thinkers Series
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Severin Schroeder is a lecturer in philosophy at the University of Oxford, Lady Margaret Hall and Christ Church, University of Oxford.

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Table of Contents



Chapter 1: Between Vienna and Cambridge.

1.1 The Wittgensteins.

1.2 Vienna.

1.3 Moral Solipsism.

1.4 Aviator or Philosopher.

1.5 Logic.

1.6 Norway and the War..

Chapter 2: Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus.

2.0 Logic and Sins.

2.1 Foundations: Referentialism, Analysis, Determinacy &Bi-polarity.

2.2 Logical Atomism.

2.3 Pictures: Language & Thought.

2.4 Logic.

2.5 Whereof One Cannot Speak.

(a) Sense, logical syntax, internal properties and formalconcepts.

(b) The logical form of reality.

(c) Solipsism.

(d) Ethics.

(e) The Tractatus Paradox..

Chapter 3: Schoolmaster, Architect and Professor ofPhilosophy..

Chapter 4: Philosophical Investigations.

4.0 Only an Album.

4.1 The Dissolution of Logical Atomism.

(a) Referentialism.

(b) Determinacy of sense.

(c) Logical analysis.

(d) Bi-polarity.

(e) Essentialism.

(f) Meaning through meaning.

4.2 The Nature of Philosophy.

4.3 Meaning and Use.

4.4 The Philosophical Problem about Mental Processes andStates.

4.5 Understanding and Meaning An instructivemisinterpretation.

4.6 The Inner-Object Conception of Sensations.

(a) The Ascribability Argument.

(b) The Idle-Wheel Argument.

(c) Knowledge of other minds.

(d) The No-Criterion Argument.

(e) An understandable use.

(f) The grammar of a sensation word.

4.7 Actions and Reasons.

(a) Voluntary action.

(b) Acting for reasons..

Chapter 5: The final years.

Chapter 6: After Wittgenstein.

6.1 Oxford Philosophy & American Philosophy.

6.2 Challenges to Wittgenstein's Philosophy.

(a) Attacks on the distinction between conceptual and empiricalstatements.

(b) Attacks on the common-sense view of linguistic meaning.

(c) Putnam's criticism of 'logical behaviourism'.

Further Reading.


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