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					Pronunciation
Pronunciation


Ludwig Wittgenstein

  (LUDE-Vickh VITT-gen sht EYE n)

  Americanization: (whit-gin steen)

  British (VITT-gin st EYE n)
  British (VITT-gin steen)

 You can pronounce it any way you
 want, so long as you know what the
 native phenology is.

 (Explain your ethic toward phenology)
Pronunciation


Ludwig Wittgenstein

  (LUDE-Vickh VITT-gen sht EYE n)

  Americanization: (whit-gin steen)

  British (VITT-gin st EYE n)


 However, please write out his full last
 name in papers. Never “Witt.” Or “W.”

 (explain why disrespectful)
Pronunciation


Ludwig Wittgenstein

  (LUDE-Vickh VITT-gen sht EYE n)

  Americanization: (whit-gin steene)

  British (VITT-gin st EYE n)

            Question:
                                       Wittgensteinian?
      If you are a follower of
      Frankenstein, are you            WittgenstEYEnian
       FrankenstEYEnian or
         FrankenstINinan?              WittgenstINnian
Biographical Stuff
Who Is He?


Basic Biographical Stuff

  26 April 1889 --   29 April 1951

  Prostate Cancer
  62 years
Wittgensteins and Cancer
-- Wittgenstein died of prostate cancer
-- his father, Karl, died of cancer of the tongue and mouth;
-- Hermine, his oldest sister, died of gynecological cancer;
-- Paul, his brother, died of prostrate cancer

"If ever there were a case to show that cancer is a genetic disease, the
Wittgenstein family should be submitted as the first exhibit of
concluding proof. Eighteen months before Hermine's death Maria
Salzer (Helene's daughter) was killed by cancer. [Helene is
Wittgenstein’s sister-- sw]. In time both Helene's daughters and
several of her granddaughters as well as her great-granddaughters
would be stricken by the same disease. Helene herself died of it in
1956. She had not seen her brother Paul since 1938."

From Alexander Waugh's, The House of Wittgenstein: A Family at War, pp 275-276
Who Is He?


Basic Biographical Stuff

  26 April 1889 --   29 April 1951

  Prostate Cancer
  62 years

  Originally from Vienna, Austria
Who Is He?


Basic Biographical Stuff
Who Is He?


Basic Biographical Stuff

  3/4ths Jewish Descent

   But not by religion
                      Moses Meier

                      Jewish




                      Moses Meier Wittgenstein    (1808, Napoleon decree)
                                                  (name of his employer)

Fanny Figdor
 Jewish

                       Hermann Christian Wittgenstein

                                          Grandfather
Leopoldine
                      Karl Wittgenstein

                                  Father
½ Jewish by descent
Who Is He?


Karl Wittgenstein

  Iron-Steel Industry “Magnate”

  “Robber Barron”

  Similar to Andrew Carnegie

  Immense, immense Wealth
Who Is He?


Paul Wittgenstein

  Brother

  Great Pianist

  Shot in the elbow in WW-1;

      Arm was amputated

 Still was a great pianist
The Beautiful Mind
Intelligence


Wickedly Intelligent

  Mathematical Inclination

  Liked Engineering, Architecture,
       (building, design)

  Acute Philosophic Ability

  Thinking Machine

  Way that he thinks is just as important as what he thinks
O. K. Bouwsma



-- When Bouwsma returned to Nebraska in 1951 after his two-year
sojourn, he wrote to his friend and former student Kenneth Johnson
that in Wittgenstein he “saw what struck me as the height of
perspecuity, the most intense intellectual activity, the swiftest and
keenest mind I have met. It was like a miracle. His words were like a
beam of light through a fog in almost any conversation.” Several
weeks later, on December 1, 1951, he wrote the following in a note
for a class on the nature of a prophet: …
O. K. Bouwsma


-- What is a prophet like? Wittgenstein is the nearest to a prophet I
have ever known. He is a man who is like a tower, who stands high
and unattached, leaning on no one. … He fears no man. … But other
men fear him. And why? Not at all because he can strike them or take
their money or their good names. They fear his judgment. And so I
feared Wittgenstein, felt responsible to him. I always knew how
precious a walk and talk with him was, and yet I was in dread of his
coming and of being with him. … His words I cherished like jewels.
And do so now. But the main point is that he robbed me of a lazy
comfort in my own mediocrity. … [He] was so clearly my rightful
superior

Wittgenstein, Conversations 1949-1951, xvi
Way His Mind Works


Tire the minds of others

  Bertrand Russell
                           (Cambridge
  G.E. Moore               philosophers)

  O.K. Bouwsma        (American
                      Philosopher)


  Deep and Intense Thought
F. P. Ramsey



“In my opinion, Mr. Wittgenstein is a philosophic genius of a different
order from any one else I know. This is partly owning to his great gift
for seeing what is essential in a problem and partly to his
overwhelming intellectual vigor, to the intensity of thought with
which he pursues a question to the bottom and never rests content
with a mere possible hypothesis. From his work more than that of any
other man I hope for a solution of the difficulties that perplex me both
in philosophy generally and in the foundations of mathematics in
particular.”

Philosophical Occasions, P. 48 (G.E. Moore)
Hard to Understand


Complained all throughout life that his
thoughts were not being understood,
even in person


Ray Monk’s Explanation:
• When he uses words, they often
  have more than one sense to him at
  the same time the word is “played”


  Peculiar sense of some terms
O. K. Bouwsma


“One thing I know is that one does not understand Wittgenstein until
he is able, not to repeat what he says, but to work with his ideas. The
latter requires long practice.”

Wittgenstein, Conversations 1949-1951, xvii
Hard to Organize his Thoughts


Complained all throughout life that his
thoughts never could get an
acceptable arrangement (organization


 This is because they were not ordinary


Relationship between ordinary thought
and exposition.
• That’s why journalists write so fast.
• Journalists don’t have any trouble
  organizing.
Raise others to artificial heights


Imagine being taught by him

The brains of smart Cambridge
students would get stimulated in a way
they had not seen before

He would see his students being
raised to artificial heights, an effect that
would then wane in his absence                 Today’s
                                               Wittgensteinians!
He would become upset when he
would see his followers only half-             (He would roll over
understand his ideas                           in his grave)
Raise others to artificial heights


Imagine being taught by him

The brains of smart Cambridge
students would get stimulated in a way
they had not seen before

He would see his students being
raised to artificial heights, an effect that
would then wane in his absence
Course Goal


One of the goals of this class is for
you to see how a truly beautiful mind
works

The hope is that you will take
something from the experience –
become a better thinker.

You’ll be more cautious with your
convictions. More aware of the trouble
with ideas.
Course Goal

 Warning
One of the goals of this class is for
youSome people will have negative reactions
1. to see how a truly beautiful mind
works
   • Quieting (the value of silence)
The hope is that you will take
   • Arrogance (dismissiveness) – in males?
something from the experience –
   • Showing others the
become a better thinker. mistakes of their views
    • Hating Wittgenstein? (can’t understand well?)
You’ll be more cautious with your
convictions. More aware of the trouble
with ideas.
Intellectual Culture
Course Goal


One of the goals of this course is for
you to relate the way Wittgenstein
thinks to developments in intellectual
culture

Wittgenstein will be the central figure
for ushering in TWO movements in
intellectual culture

  Analytic Thought     Early thinking (central figure)

  Post-Analytic Thought      Later thinking (central figure)

                                  Note the significance of this
Wittgenstein v. Einstein


Who is the smartest person of the
1900s?

Often people say Einstein (explain
why).

   Cultural bias for mathematics

Suggestion: Wittgenstein is the
Einstein of Non-Science (Philosophy)

 The greatest philosopher in the
 history of thinking
What Wittgenstein
   Did to Me
 Awakening


 Wittgenstein had the following effect
 on my life

 • Turned me against quantitative
   judicial politics
 • Made abandon not only my
   dissertation, but the whole field
 • Showed me how theoretically
   impoverished political science had
   become (at least, the judicial part)
                                              Explain for fix
  Confusion about science                     for this!
 Confusion about “ideology” & “politics”
New PhD’s in Pol Sci are less and less intellectually interesting
Awakening


Wittgenstein had the following effect
on my life

• Changed my views on religion and
  spirituality
   How narrow minded atheists were
• Showed me how confused the
  world is

• Taught me a new way to think and
  to see things

          Analogy: Karate School
Tools of Thinking


Simile
  • To think like Wittgenstein, you
    have to master the simile


Juxtaposing ways of speaking

  • Saying this is like saying that

Examples, Examples
                                      Political Science
  • Philosophy is always done “on     and “Ideology”
    the ground,” with examples
Psychology and
 Idiosyncrasy
Asperger’s Syndrome?


Some have wondered whether
Wittgenstein had some form of autism

• Possible relationship between
  Autism (in men) and exceptional
  intellectual abilities (e.g., creativity)

• Controversial stuff. Bottom line:
  Wittgenstein is a different sort of
  person

• Cannot understand him without
  understanding biography
Extremely Serious Man


Gave up his wealth
  Think about that

  Even Jesus only talked about it

 He didn’t give it to the poor,
 because he thought they would be
 corrupted by it

   (cf. lottery winners)
   (professional athletes)
Outbursts


Things would set him off

 • Chit chat in class
 • Pollyianish political views held
   by supposed intellectuals

 Incredibly judgmental, dismissive of
 your ideas

 (also had bouts of intense kindness
 too, as we shall see)
Intellectual Sincerity


Immense sincerity

  • Wittgensteinians do not like
    pretense

  • They don’t like it when people
    just take positions (Devil’s
    advocate)

  • They don’t like it when people
    are fake

    (cf. academic social clubs)

   Hated being a “don” at Cambridge
Mannerisms


Story: washing the dishes
in the bathroom

Wearing similar styled clothing

Once believed he had thought
himself into insanity (brain injury
from thinking too hard) – explain
this

Getting away from people to do
philosophy (e.g., living in a hut in
Norway)
                    http://cfs.unipv.it/Gallpics/oggetti/Hutfs.htm




View from the hut




                         Where the hut used to be
What Did He Seem
      Like
How He Spoke


Voice is somewhat high-pitched

Slight accent … “hrrrussel”
Classroom Pedagogy


Would not teach “the field”
   Never would regurgitate standard
  information

  Class meant solving problems:
  getting clear on the ideas
  Was completely original

  The title of his main course at
  Cambridge was simply “philosophy”
Classroom Pedagogy


Spontaneous Performances
  Prepare notes, and think himself
 through a problem

 You were to follow along, write
 everything down
 Eyes and Gaze were captivating
Classroom Pedagogy



Animation. Throwing his head in his
hands “I can’t think today” “I’m so
stupid”

The answers would seem like they
were coming to him from above

He would seem to be intensively
concentrating and then would erupt
with the answer
Ray Monk


His lecture style has often been described, and seems to have been
quite different from that of any other university lecturer: he lectured
without notes, and often appeared to be simply standing in front of his
audience, thinking aloud. Occasionally he would stop, saying, “Just a
minute, let me think!” and sit down for a few minutes, staring at his
upturned hand. Sometimes the lecture would restart in response to a
question from a particularly brave member of the class. Often he
would curse his own stupidity, saying: “What a damn fool I am!” or
exclaim vehemently: “This is as difficult as hell!” Attending the
lectures were about fifteen people, mostly undergraduates, but
including also a few dons, most notably G.E. Moore …

Duty of Genius, p. 289-290
Take a look at this actor’s rendition
Chronological
Understanding
Shifts in Thought


Wittgenstein’s first work is called the
Tractatus

The phrase Tractarian Wittgenstein
refers to his views, roughly, from about
1918 to 1929

The outlook that occurs in the
Tractatus will shift significantly
                                           half 1930 - death
1918 -- 1928       1929 – half 1930




                                            Eggshell quote
Some argue for a 4th quarter after 1944.
I don’t.
My view: the thoughts he embarked upon in late 1930
led him to all the places he ended up.
So he begins constructing his new project then.
Understanding Transitions


It’s wrong to think of Wittgenstein as
having completely different views as
his life moves on

The better way to think of it is of a
metamorphosis

      Caterpillar to Butterfly?

      Adolescent to an Adult?

      Important thing: it’s a
      progression, not an error

				
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