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Monday
Jan042016

Was Wittgenstein Right (Horwich)?

... pretty good stuff here.

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/03/03/was-wittgenstein-right/?_r=1

But here is my only complaint. Characterizing Wittgenstein's negative attitudes about the field of philosophy, Horwich writes:

" There are no startling discoveries to be made ... 'from the armchair' through some blend of intuition, pure reason and conceptual analysis."

But was Wittgenstein himself doing philosophy? Because, if he was and he was right -- both of which seem true to me -- then philosophy did not fail; it merely ended. In fact, if Wittgenstein is right, philosophy was a success. It just took history's best thinker to put things we already knew in the right arrangement and the right light. This is an important distinction because it means that philosophy is far from worthless. It is simply a bunch of "thinking exercises," which, if contemplated properly, ends with the fly leaving the bottle. That is, it makes you smarter. I want to say: it was Wittgenstein who allowed us all to graduate.

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