[lit-ideas] Re: The Philosopher's Show

  • From: Donal McEvoy <donalmcevoyuk@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sun, 1 Jul 2012 20:01:45 +0100 (BST)

 From: "Jlsperanza@xxxxxxx" <Jlsperanza@xxxxxxx>

> The  implicature in Witters's 'key tenet' (as supplied by 
D. McEvoy) is that showing  is, regardless of whether I have properly 
understood McEvoy's intentions in  supplying it), somewhat _poorer_ than 

There is no such implicature: as the sense of 'what is said' is dependent on 
what may only be shown, that is reason enough that 'what may be shown' is of no 
"poorer" status than 'what is said'.

However, there is perhaps a difference between W's view in TLP and PI: in TLP, 
what is not contained in the TLP [i.e. what is shown by what is said there] is 
more fundamental than what is contained there [i.e. 'what is said' there]. This 
is not obviously W's view in PI, where it might be said that 'what may be shown 
but not said' and the sense of  'what is said' are inextricably linked but not 
in way where one is the poor relation of the other. 

In TLP, the "limits of language" mean we cannot speak with sense of matters 
that lie beyond the limits of natural science: beyond the limits of natural 
science all we might do is show what the TLP shows. In PI, the "limits of 
language" also work as a check or restraint on philosophical talk and again as 
in TLP because philosophical talk misunderstands the logic of our language: so 
that there is a continuity here - so that, for example, the following claims 
are almost interchangeable: ‘[m]ost of the propositions and questions of 
philosophers arise from our failure to understand the logic of our language’ 
(TLP 4.003) and the problems that confront us in philosophy are rooted in ‘a
misunderstanding of the logic of our language’ (PI 93). And yet, and 
yet...there are arguably great differences and W's view of saying and showing 
may be one of them.

[The Euro Final has started, however, and I must go....in fact, there's just 
been a goal]


We may need an  elaboration on the semantics of 'show' -- or more, the 
semantics of _show_: the  phenomenon of showing. What semantics does it carry? 
Why is it that some item  that cannot be said can however be successfully 
shown? What is the HISTORY  behind Witters's 'key tenet'. Some relate it to 
Budda and the ineffable, but I  wouldn't know. I'm not so much interested in 
Witters's view on the limitations  of language, but rather in his epiphany, if 
that's the word, of 'show'.  Etc.



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