Philosophical Investigations: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Philosophical Investigations

1st Edition

By Michael O' Sullivan

Macat Library

98 pages

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Description

Many still consider Ludwig Wittgenstein’s 1953 Philosophical Investigations to be one of the breakthrough works of twentieth-century philosophy.

The book sets out a radically new conception of philosophy itself, and demonstrates all the attributes of a fine analytical mind. Taking an argument from Plato and subjecting it to detailed (and very clear) analysis, Wittgenstein shows his understanding of how the sequence and function of differing parts of a highly-complex argument can be broken down and assessed. In so doing, he reaches a logical position of simultaneous agreement and disagreement with Plato’s philosophical position.

Philosophical Investigations is also a powerful example of the skill of interpretation. Philosophical problems often arise from confusions in the use of language – and the way to solve these problems, Wittgenstein posits, is by clarifying language use. He argues that philosophers must study ordinary uses of language and examine how people use it as a tool in their everyday lives. In this highly-interpretative way, the meaning of a word or sentence becomes relative to the context (people, culture, community) in which it is used. Rather than debate abstract problems, Wittgenstein urges philosophers to concern themselves with ordinary life and the concrete situations in which humans find themselves.

Table of Contents

Ways in to the text Who was Ludwig Wittgenstein? What does Philosophical Investigations say? Why does Philosophical Investigations matter? Section 1: Influences Module 1: The Author and the Historical Context  Module 2: Academic Context Module 3: The Problem Module 4: The Author's Contribution Section 2: Ideas  Module 5: Main Ideas Module 6: Secondary Ideas Module 7: Achievement Module 8: Place in the Author's Work  Section 3: Impact Module 9: The First Responses Module 10: The Evolving Debate Module 11: Impact and Influence Today Module 12: Where Next? Glossary of Terms People Mentioned in the Text Works Cited

About the Author

Dr Michael O’Sullivan is a tutor in the Department of Philosophy, King’s College London. He is the Editor of Wittgenstein and Perception.

About the Series

The Macat Library

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With a growing list of over 180 titles across a broad range of subject areas, Macat works with leading academics from the world’s top universities to produce new analyses that focus on the ideas and the impact of the most influential works ever written. By setting them in context – and looking at the influences that shaped their authors, as well as the responses they provoked – Macat encourages readers to look at these classics and game-changers with fresh eyes.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PHI000000
PHILOSOPHY / General