Re: [quickphilosophy] Re: 1.12; 1.13; 1.2 & 1.21

  • From: wittrsl@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • To: quickphilosophy@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sun, 05 Sep 2010 22:58:27 +0100

Thanks for that comment, Ron.

It's not a quirk of mine to draw comparisons between W and the 
trasncendentally idealist Kant.  Like anything else concerning W there 
is no agreement, of course.  And come to that, Kant is not altogether 
easy to understand.

For example, Hans-Johann Glock:

"Several authors have detected profound analogies between Kant and 
Wittgenstein. Their claims have been contradicted by scholars, such 
being the agreed penalty for attributions to authorities. Many of the 
alleged similarities have either been left unsubstantiated at a detailed 
exegetical level, or have been confined to highly general points. At the 
same time, the 'scholarly' backlash has tended to ignore the importance 
of some of these general points, or has focused on very specific issues 
or purely terminological matters. To advance the debate, I distinguish 
four different topics: questions of actual influence; parallels at the 
methodological level; substantial similarities in philosophical logic; 
substantial similarities in the philosophy of mind. The article 
concentrates on the second and third topic. Section I argues that the 
critical conception of philosophy shared by Kant and Wittgenstein is 
itself due to the fact that they explain the a priori status of 
necessary propositions by reference to the way we experience or 
represent reality. Section II shows how the Tractatiis linguistically 
transforms this 'reflective turn', replacing Kant's preconditions of 
experience by preconditions of symbolic representation. Section III 
suggests that this explanation of the a priori involves the idea of an 
isomorphism between thought and reality, and that both Kant's 
transcendental idealism and Wittgenstein's early metaphysics of 
symbolism distort this isomorphism. Wittgenstein later rejected this 
metaphysics of symbolism, on the grounds that language is autonomous, 
and section IV detects parallels between that idea and Kant's 
'diallelus' argument against the correspondence theory of truth. 
Finally, I claim that while Wittgenstein is right to insist that all a 
priori propositions are conceptual, Kant, in calling them synthetic a 
priori, is right to deny that they simply unpack the concepts involved 
in the propositions themselves."

Ron Allen wrote:
> Hi Martin:
> There is one TLP proposition that does have a remarkably idealist ring 
> to it:
> 5.621 The world and life are one.
> If my life is the world, then it seems that my consciousness has a 
> crucial generative role to play in making the world, and this sure 
> sounds a lot like idealism. So, maybe you have a point, and I would 
> think that if W. started with something like this, we'd be fairly well 
> justified to classify him as an idealist of some sort.
> But, since he derives it from his realist axiomatics, I'd still argue 
> that it's rather a case of his extreme realism absorbing what seems to 
> be an idealist conclusion into itself.
> Thanks!
> --Ron

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