josh blog

Ordinary language is all right.

One could divide humanity into two classes:
those who master a metaphor, and those who hold by a formula.
Those with a bent for both are too few, they do not comprise a class.

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6 Apr '14 09:15:35 PM

'Mr. Soames, you should write so that if you make a mistake, anyone who knows the subject will immediately be able to identify it.'

So, like an accountant?

6 Apr '14 04:36:29 AM

Do You Feel Real?

5 Apr '14 03:38:48 AM

—The interrupted new material in the 80s is complemented by material awkward in its own way at §§134–142. And doubt is again a theme in §142: 'It is only in normal cases that the use of a word is clearly laid out in advance for us; we know, are in no doubt, what we have to say in this or that case…'. Then, from §143 on, we're off: series continuation, 'reading', rule-following, private language, the diarist…

Why the interruption? Not just a side trip to lodge some criticism of the Tractatus (criticism of unclear substance, at that). To make direct contact with skepticism, with the existence or removal of doubt, Wittgenstein has to be in the vicinity of ideas about assertion, truth. But, curiously, these ideas track passages from the Tractatus about 'logic and its application' (just after, significantly, 'Alle Sätze unserer Umgangssprache sind tatsächlich, so wie sie sind, logisch vollkommen geordnet…', 5.5563):

5.557: 'Die Logik darf mit ihrer Anwendung nicht kollidieren.'

§141: 'Können nun Bild und Anwendung kollidieren? Nun, sie können kollidieren, als uns das Bild eine andere Verwendung erwarten läßt; weil die Menschen im allgemeinen von diesem Bild diese Anwendung machen.'

There were some references before (e.g. §87c) to normality, but it seems like this bit from §141 twists things decisively in that direction—makes the right terms available.

And acknowledging the possibility of conflicting applications seems like it has to be part of that.

5 Apr '14 01:59:36 AM

'… you understood him, and he understood something real about you.'

4 Apr '14 09:05:01 PM

'How do you thank someone for giving you a gift like house music?'

4 Apr '14 08:16:07 PM

'I carefully guard myself against making the law. Rather, I concern myself with determining problems, unleashing them, revealing them within the framework of such complexity as to shut the mouths of prophets and legislators: all those who speak for others and above others. It is that moment that the complexity of the problem will be able to appear in its connection with people's lives; and consequently, the legitimacy of a common enterprise will be able to appear through concrete questions, difficult cases, revolutionary movements, reflections, and evidence.'

4 Apr '14 02:39:14 AM

Except big old burnt turkeys, hams. For some reason I believed those.

4 Apr '14 01:48:06 AM

But I never believed on TV when people were always burning dinner. Who burns that much dinner?!

3 Apr '14 11:30:15 PM

I like it when people in movies are complimented on their cooking and they say, 'it was nothing, just burned a few eggs'.