Wittgenstein's Whewell's Court LecturesCambridge, 1938 - 1941, From the Notes by Yorick Smythies
Wittgenstein’s Whewell’s Court Lectures contains previously unpublished notes from lectures given by Ludwig Wittgenstein between 1938 and 1941. The volume offers new insight into the development of Wittgenstein’s thought and includes some of the finest examples of Wittgenstein’s lectures in regard to both content and reliability. Many notes in this text refer to lectures from which no other detailed notes survive, offering new contexts to Wittgenstein’s examples and metaphors, and providing a more thorough and systematic treatment of many topics Each set of notes is accompanied by an editorial introduction, a physical description and dating of the notes, and a summary of their relation to Wittgenstein’s Nachlass Offers new insight into the development of Wittgenstein’s ideas, in particular his ideas about certainty and concept-formation The lectures include more than 70 illustrations of blackboard drawings, which underline the importance of visual thought in Wittgenstein’s approach to philosophy Challenges the dating of some already published lecture notes, including the Lectures on Freedom of the Will and the Lectures on Religious Belief
Preface ix Editorial Introduction xiv List of Editorial Conventions xx Abbreviations xxii WHEWELL’S COURT LECTURES, CAMBRIDGE 1938–1941 1 1 Lectures on Knowledge 6 ?Easter Term 1938? 2 Lectures on Necessary Propositions and Other Topics 50 ?Easter Term 1938? Lectures on Gödel 50 Puzzle of Trinity College 57 Necessary Propositions 62 Continuation. (Notes taken by J.C.T.) 72 ‘Absolutely Determinate’ 74 Continuous Band of Colours 76 Are There an Infinite Number of Shades of Colour? 77 ‘All There’: Logical Necessity 78 Achilles and the Tortoise 82 Infinitesimal Calculus and Free Will 83 3 Lectures on Similarity 88 ?Michaelmas Term 1939? 4 Lectures on Description 137 ?Lent Term 1940? 5 Wittgenstein’s Reply to a Paper by Y. Smythies on ‘Understanding’ 190 ?Lent Term 1940? 6 Lectures on Belief 203 ?Easter Term 1940? 7 Lectures on Volition 254 ?Michaelmas Term 1940? 8 Lectures on Freedom of the Will 282 ?Lent Term 1941? Appendix 297 9 Y. Smythies’ 1940 Paper on ‘Understanding’ 300 10 Preparatory Notes for Y. Smythies’ 1945 Paper on ‘Meaning’ 308 11 The King of the Dark Chamber, by Rabindranath Tagore, translated from the English of Rabindranath Tagore into the English used 327 L. Wittgenstein and Yorick Smythies 12 Comments Prompted by the Notes Taken From Wittgenstein’s Lectures on Volition and on Freewill 336 Y. Smythies Bibliography 348 Index 000
Volker A. Munz is Assistant Professor at the University of Klagenfurt, Austria. He is the editor of Language and World (with Klaus Puhl and Joseph Wang, 2010), Mind, Language and Action (with Daniele Moyal-Sharrock and Annalisa Coliva, 2015), the author of Satz und Sinn. Bemerkungen zur Sprachphilosophie Wittgensteins (2005), as well as numerous essays. Bernhard Ritter is University Assistant at the University of Klagenfurt. He has published articles on Kant and Wittgenstein and is the author of the forthcoming Kant and Post-Tractarian Wittgenstein: Transcendentalism, Idealism, Illusion.
"These notes, taken by one of Wittgenstein's most faithful pupils between 1938 and 1941, succeed in providing readers with a rich and vivid picture of Wittgenstein as a lecturer, and in supplementing our knowledge of his thought. Munz and Ritter have done an excellent job by presenting these notes in a very legible format and supplying a vast quantity of pertinent information in an admirably economic fashion. This outstanding volume is an extremely welcome addition to the field of Wittgenstein studies." Joachim Schulte, Universität Zürich "All Wittgenstein scholars, and many others too, will be indebted to Volker Munz and Bernhard Ritter for their first rate editorial work on Smythies extensive notes of Wittgenstein's Whewell Court lectures. The editorial decisions are judicious and the scholarly apparatus is impeccable. The detailed lecture notes vividly convey the style of Wittgenstein's delivery, the intensity of his thinking, the spontaneity of his responses to questions, and the occasional flashes of wit. These shed invaluable light on the interpretation of Wittgenstein's own writings" P.M.S. Hacker, St John's College, University of Oxford Wittgenstein's Whewell's Court Lectures contains previously unpublished notes from lectures given by Ludwig Wittgenstein in Cambridge between 1938 and 1941. These notes by Yorick Smythies (1917–1980), a pupil and close friend of the philosopher's, include some of the finest examples of Wittgenstein's lectures, offering new insight into the development of Wittgenstein's thought and shedding light on the man behind the philosophy. Though the notes elaborate upon many topics familiar from Wittgenstein's work, such as necessary propositions, knowledge, belief, voluntariness, and freedom of the will, they often break new ground by recounting Wittgenstein's thoughts on authors about whom there is little to be found in his other work. In addition to the work of Russell, Moore, and James, Smythies records Wittgenstein's discussion of Gödel's theorems, W. E. Johnson, and Hume's account of belief. The lectures also underline the importance of imagery and pictures in Wittgenstein's approach to philosophy, with new passages examining the famous metaphor of the fly in the fly-bottle and seventy blackboard drawings copied by Smythies.
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