[lit-ideas] "Roughly" (Was: Wittgenstein)

  • From: Jlsperanza@xxxxxxx
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 27 May 2004 10:17:41 EDT

_Henninge@xxxxxxxxxxxx (mailto:Henninge@xxxxxxxxxxx)   quotes:
>  Okay. So apparently, 'roughly speaking' was Wittgenstein's  choice for  the
> English translation of the German expression  'beilaeufig  gesprochen'.
and writes:

Apparently, in Austrian German one can say "beiläufig zehn euro" to  mean
"about ten euros." That's a bit idiosyncratic, but Wittgenstein was at  home
in that idiom. There's a way in which I can say "Basically, objects  are
colorless" that strikes me as approximating the meaning. 
--- Okay. I have not yet read McEvoy's post addressing this issue ("Is  there 
a need...?), but one thing I sort of forgot to mention in my previous is  the 
(sort of) silly distinction that one can make -- in English -- between  
'rough' and 'non-rough'. 
I'm not sure about 'basically', which is a basic adverb -- but 'roughly'  has 
an obvious derogative connotation (unless you enjoy things rough). "Roughly"  
speaking is not something the Queen would do -- even though, as McEvoy would  
have it, 'roughly speaking' is not the same as _speaking roughly_ -- if you 
get  his drift.
If we think of 'smooth' as the antonym of 'rough', then Wittgenstein,  
willingly or not, is implicating that 'smoothly speaking', objects are  
And he is making the point that he's no smoothie.

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