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Philosophical Investigations Paperback – 6 Nov 2009

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Product details

  • Paperback: 592 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell; 4th Edition edition (6 Nov. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1405159294
  • ISBN-13: 978-1405159296
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 2.8 x 22.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 32,825 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

From the Back Cover

Immediately upon its posthumous publication in 1953, LudwigWittgenstein′s Philosophical Investigations was hailed as amasterpiece, and the ensuing years have confirmed this initialassessment. Today it is widely acknowledged to be the single mostimportant philosophical work of the twentieth century.

In this definitive new en face German–English edition,Wittgenstein experts Peter Hacker and Joachim Schulte haveincorporated significant editorial changes to earlier editions ofPhilosophical Investigations in order to reflect moreclosely Wittgenstein′s original intentions. Notable revisionsinclude the placement of Wittgenstein′s notes Randbemerkungen   into their designatedpositions in the text, some corrections to the originally publishedGerman text, and the numbering of all the remarks in what was Part2 and is now named Philosophy of Psychology AFragment. Extensive modifications and corrections have alsobeen made to G. E. M. Anscombe′s original English translation.Detailed editorial endnotes have been added to illuminate difficulttranslation decisions and to identify references and allusions inWittgenstein′s original text.

About the Author

Peter Hacker is the author of the four–volume AnalyticalCommentary on the Philosophical Investigations (Blackwell,1980–96) the first two volumes co–authored with G. P. Baker (SecondEditions, 2003, 2009) and of Wittgenstein s Place inTwentieth–century Analytic Philosophy (Blackwell, 1996). He hasalso written extensively on philosophy of mind, including Philosophical Foundations of Neuroscience (Blackwell, 2003)and History of Cognitive Neuroscience (Wiley–Blackwell,2008), co–authored with M. R. Bennett, and Human Nature: TheCategorial Framework (Blackwell, 2007), the first volume of atrilogy on human nature.

Joachim Schulte edited the authoritative critical–geneticedition of Wittgenstein s PhilosophischeUntersuchungen (2001). He is author of Wittgenstein: An Introduction (1989), Chor und Gesetz:Wittgenstein im Kontext (1990), Experience and Expression:Wittgenstein s Philosophy of Psychology (1993), and ofmany dozens of philosophical papers.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Timothy E. Quinlan on 25 Oct. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is an unusual and highly eccentric book, so much so indeed that it is hard to describe it. In places it reads like a treatise on logic, in others like the poems of Rumi and still others like a thesis on the merits and demerits of language. Basically Wittgenstein is arguing in his own "sui generis" way that conceptual confusions surrounding language use are at the root of most philosophical problems. Challenging but wholly enjoyable read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Wesley Corbett on 30 Oct. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A philosophical earthquake at richter scale 10!
The book is sharp and the contents are sharper.
A summary of some of the contents:
- A refutation against referentialism.
- Meaning as 'Use'.
- Language games.
- Rules.
- A refutation against Private Language.
- Theories on Psychology.
You can't go wrong even if you do prefer the Tractatus.
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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Alestor on 10 July 2011
Format: Paperback
"Philosophical Investigations" is one of the most important philosophical books I've come across. As a recent graduate, I can testify that the time I spent studying Wittgenstein was some of the most interesting on my degree. Wittgenstein has a very common-sense approach in this book (unlike his earlier Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, in which he attempted to make logical atomism answer everything) and the majority of the book consists of breaking down philosophical problems and exposing them as not really being problems at all. In a sense, Wittgenstein's philosophy is the erasure of philosophy and a caution to other philosophers.

In the foreword, Wittgenstein writes that he would "hate for his writing to save people the trouble of thinking" and he certainly acheived his wish. Many people find Wittgenstein very difficult to understand even when they've been studying philosophy for years, so this is definitely NOT a book for someone who is unfamiliar or unconfident in reading philosophical texts.

Nevertheless, for someone interested in philosophy, I think this book is a must. And this particular edition is well worth owning. The translation is excellent - it feels easy and natural and full of personality. Plus, the original German is printed opposite each translated page. This is particularly helpful for a student wishing to fully engage in the text and deconstruct the work, since naturally some terms in English may be ambiguous, whereas in the original German the meaning is clear (take the two senses of "meaning", for example - "meinen" and "Bedeutung").

So if you love philosophy or consider yourself a philosopher, I would recommend you this text, especially in this edition. If not, steer clear. You won't get much out of it except frustration.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By S. Meadows on 23 Oct. 2014
Format: Paperback
From a layman’s point of view, Wittgenstein has a fearsome reputation in the realm of modern philosophy. This is his best known work and contains the most extensive account of his thinking from his own hand. So one approaches it with a feeling that borders fear and respect. No one can expect a light read.

Before dealing with the substance of the book, a word first about the structure of the book. The whole book is divided into numbered paragraphs varying from just one or two lines to a page in length. On the left hand side is the German original text, on the right hand side is the English translation. The original translation was provided by G.E.M Anscombe which has been then modified/corrected. The introduction is quite baffling. It seems designed for the purist who is very familiar with Wittgenstein’s work, as there is an in-depth discussion about various manuscripts which went towards making the final work. For the most part, I think this can be skipped over.

So what of the text then? We hit a problem with the first paragraph. The opening gambit is a quote from Augustine’s Confessions, only instead of providing a translation either into German or into English, it has been left untranslated in Latin. So unless you are fluent in Latin or have a copy of the Confessions to hand (thankfully I did) then you will be left none the wiser as to the starting point. In case you don’t have Augustine, the passage used is translated thus:

“When people gave a name to an object and when, following the sound, they moved their body towards that object, I would see and retain the fact that that object received from them this sound which they pronounced when they intended to draw attention to it.
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By Lester Wong on 14 April 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Outstanding bilingual edition of one of the most important works of philosophy in the 20th century
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Featherless Biped on 27 April 2013
Format: Paperback
" But I did not get my picture of the world by satisfying myself of its correctness: nor do I have it because I am satisfied of its correctness. No: it is the inherited background against which I distinguish between true and false."(OC 94).

"Superstition is nothing but belief in the causal nexus." TLP 5.1361

"Now if it is not the causal connections which we are concerned with, then the activities of the mind lie open before us." "The Blue Book" p6 (1933)

"We feel that even when all possible scientific questions have been answered, the problems of life remain completely untouched. Of course, there are then no questions left, and this itself is the answer." TLP 6.52 (1922)

"Nonsense, Nonsense, because you are making assumptions instead of simply describing. If your head is haunted by explanations here, you are neglecting to remind yourself of the most important facts."
Z 220

"Philosophy simply puts everything before us and neither explains nor deduces anything...One might give the name `philosophy' to what is possible before all new discoveries and inventions."
PI 126
"The more narrowly we examine actual language, the sharper becomes the conflict between it and our requirement. (For the crystalline purity of logic was, of course, not a result of investigation: it was a requirement.)"PI 107

"The wrong conception which I want to object to in this connexion is the following, that we can discover something wholly new. That is a mistake. The truth of the matter is that we have already got everything, and that we have got it actually present; we need not wait for anything. We make our moves in the realm of the grammar of our ordinary language, and this grammar is already there.
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