Dada is the sun, Dada is the egg. Dada is the Police of the Police.

5/01/2005

Wittgenstein was not a conservative

Keith Burgess-Jackson writes:

Two conservative philosophers--David Hume in 1711 and Ludwig Wittgenstein in 1889--were born on this date.

I'll take a pass on Hume, but the notion that Wittgenstein was any kind of political conservative is just horseshit, a lie. I hope this is not becoming some kind of conventional wisdom on the right; I consider it a slander against one of history's greatest philosophers.

Wittgenstein was a self-described communist (though not a doctrinaire Marxist) who for a while intended to emigrate to the Soviet Union, going so far as to take lessons in Russian.

And anyone who thinks that his views on language and semantics as laid down in the Philosophical Investigations entail any kind of conservativism is sorely mistaken. To explain why in any detail would be a significant undertaking, but suffice to say that simply locating the origin of meaning in the context of the social use of language does not mean one must have any sort of prejudice in favor of the status quo.

Blogarama - The Blog Directory Sanity is not statistical.