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Tlp Student Form

Tlp Student Form

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Published by Sattyaki Basu

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Published by: Sattyaki Basu on Aug 30, 2012
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Wittgenstein‘s
Tractatus
: A Student‘s
Edition
©Duncan Richter2009
This is an unfinished draft of a new translation of Ludwig
Wittgenstein‘s
Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus.
Please feelfree to make use of it, but in return please inform me (at rich-terdj@vmi.edu)of any mistakes that you find. Thank you.
 
Wittgenstein‘s
Tractatus
: A Student‘s Edition
 1
IntroductionThis book aims to do two things: to provide a new and im-
 proved translation of Ludwig Wittgenstein‘s
Tractatus Logi-co-Philosophicus
, and to provide students of that work withdirections to useful secondary sources. These directions, ana-lyses, and comments are provided in brackets, to show that
they are not part of Wittgenstein‘s text.
The book is not in-tended to stand alone as a complete guide to the
Tractatus
, butI have made it as user-friendly as possible. It is meant as akind of handbook and so can only hope to be a starting point,
not the last word on Wittgenstein‘s treatise.
 We should probably begin with some information aboutWi
ttgenstein‘s life and times. This is especially impo
rtant aswe need to know what he had read (and been told) if we are toknow what he is reacting to and talking about in the
Tractatus
.WittgensteinWittgenstein was born into an immensely wealthy family inVienna, Austria in 1889. His engineering studies took him toBerlin, Germany and Manchester, England, but also led to aninterest in mathematics which, in turn, led to an interest in thefoundations of mathematics. Having sought the advice of theGerman mathematician and philosopher Gottlob Frege (1848-1925), Wittgenstein went to Cambridge University to studywith Bertrand Russell (1872-1970) in 1911. In 1912 he for-mally enrolled as a student at the university. Just two yearslater one of the leading philosophers at Cambridge, G. E.Moore, traveled to Norway to take dictation from Wittgens-tein, who had gone there to escape distractions. Later thatyear (1914) Wittgenstein joined the Austrian army, in whichhe served throughout the First World War. He finished hisbook in 1918, while on leave, and published it (in German) in1921 as
 Logisch-Philosophische Abhandlung
. The English
 
2
translation, now called
Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus
, waspublished the following year. After this Wittgenstein quituniversity life and worked as a school teacher, an architect,and a gardener, before returning to Cambridge in 1929. In hiswork from then on he criticized many of his earlier ideas.SchopenhauerPerhaps the first source of these ideas was Arthur Schopen-hauer (1788-1860).
Wittgenstein read Schopenhauer‘s
TheWorld as Will and Representation
as a teenager and acceptedmuch of it as true. Peter Geach, in the
Philosophical Review
,
 
lxvi (1957), p. 558, writes that: ―Wittgenstein himself stated in
conversation that when he was young he believed Schopen-hauer to have been fundamentally right (though, not surpri-
singly, he could make nothing of the ―objectification of theWill‖).‖
What this means we will see below.It is not known whether Wittgenstein read Schopenhau-
er‘s
The Fourfold Root of the Principle of Sufficient Reason
,but there are striking parallels between (some of) what Scho-penhauer writes there and (some of) what Wittgenstein writesin the
Tractatus
. Given Wittgenstein‘s interest in Schope
n-hauer it seems overwhelmingly likely that he would have readthis early work, which Schopenhauer demands his readers readfirst in order to understand
The World as Will and Representa-tion
properly (see WWR Volume I, pp. xiii-xiv). Magee ob-serves (pp. 311-312) that
―No one disputes that Wittgenstein
was soaked in Schopenhauer. The point is, though, that hewas not soaked in anyone else: there was no other philosopherof the past whose work he knew even pass
ably well.‖
Giventhis exclusive soaking, undertaken quite voluntarily, and
Schopenhauer‘s demand
that his readers also read
The Four- fold Root 
, we may assume that Wittgenstein did indeed read
The Fourfold Root 
at some time.So what did Schopenhauer believe? He presents hisviews as a kind of synthesis of the best of Western and Easternideas, both ancient and modern, about the ultimate nature of reality and how one ought to live. The world, he says, is re-

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