[lit-ideas] Re: lw

  • From: Donal McEvoy <donalmcevoyuk@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 8 May 2014 17:31:26 +0100 (BST)

>3. We are now challenged to disprove the thesis by
saying things in language which we are told in advance are unsayable, even
though we have no idea what such things might be.
4. In such form, the challenge obviously cannot be met, so
1. and 2. are taken as proven.>

At to 4, no: if W is right, his POV can only be shown - it cannot be proved,
still less expressed (though we may use expressions to show it).

As to 3, no: the challenge is to give an account that explains how names name -
it is left open whether this can be done, even though W's position is that it
cannot. No question is begged: and it is assumed that, if such an account can
be given, it will not be "saying" the "unsayable" but
rather showing that what W thinks is unsayable can in fact be said. 

JLS' post might allude to the view that 'Fido' names the dog Fido if it is used
as a name of Fido: but this does not explain how 'Fido' names
Fido (it no more does this than saying "'The snow is white' is true iff
the snow is white" explains how the linguistic statement can refer
to a non-linguistic reality). To give examples where names name is not to give
an explanation of the naming-relation but merely to illustrate it: what the
challenge asks is to provide an explanation so that the relation is captured in
language, perhaps by way of some "theory" or "criterion" by
which we can determine that a word is being used as a name and not otherwise.*

*Consider the difference between a dog owner uttering 'Fido'
when (a) asked the name of his dog (b) shouting at Fido - (b) is not a use of
'Fido' to name Fido in the same sense as (a), or perhaps at all (and
even in (a) 'Fido' may report Fido's name rather than 'name' Fido in
some other sense, as when (c) the Queen names a ship 'Fido').
On Thursday, 8 May 2014, 13:05, palma <palmaadriano@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

>​wittgenstein was confused in a rather benign way. 
>in his view a statement of the form "king Leonidas is brave" is not 'saying' 
>anything since it fails to be a representation/proposition of a fact (the 
>traditional cretinism of thinking that the abstract is not representable 
>coupled with crappy early behaviorism is the key to understand the view, hence 
>"KL died defending the Thermooilis" is a representation of the fact that KL's 
>heart stopped beating at xx time of the yy etc.​) In flurry of rhet​h​orics 
>the statements shows either something about what the speaker th​ought of ​ the 
>king, or what hearer is supposed to "grasp" etc. it does not say anything 
>because the limits of what is said/effable are within the same limit of the 
>logical sace, minus contradictions and the negation of contradictions.
>​ought ​ 
>The twist that LW introduced is to add that something like "317 is prime" is 
>equally not 'saying anything', for the somewhat more sophisticated reason that 
>the quoted claim is tautological, if you believe his theory of numbers, & 
>being tautological it fails to 'exclude' any state of affairs actual or 
>it "shows" that 317 is prime, it cannot say it for the reason above.
>how far one wishes to push such discussion is completely up to the dogma that 
>what Wittgenstein said is Talmudically understood, hence it is 'true' in some 
>sense or other, the rest is interpretation.
>On Wed, May 7, 2014 at 11:34 PM, Omar Kusturica <omarkusto@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
>I don't see what there is about the say-distinction that cannot be said but 
>only shown. "Statements say and pictures show" is a statement, not a picture. 
>It is not something unsayable in our language either, instead it is a 
>platitude. Now, is true that pictures can also 'say' in a way, and statements 
>can also 'show', in a way. But I cannot see statements that 'show but do not 
>say', any more than I can understand pictures that 'say but do not show.' I 
>conclude that Wittgenstein had a few too much to drink when he wrote that, and 
>Donal had a few much too much when he paraphras29 rue d'Ulm
>f-75005 paris france


palma,  e TheKwini, KZN


cell phone is 0762362391

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