Customer Reviews


7 Reviews
5 star:
 (1)
4 star:
 (2)
3 star:
 (2)
2 star:
 (1)
1 star:
 (1)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Interesting Man!
I warmed to Wittgenstein when I read he never rode his bike over worms! I admired his philosophy of Life being a "Moral Duty."
He was as much of an unlikely kind of Avatar, as a philosopher and I wish he had found more of a happy niche for himself, in his oftentimes black comedy of a lifetime.
This small book is a useful introduction.
Published 17 months ago by Euphemia

versus
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Please stop doing philosophy because Wittgenstein said so
Having read Heidegger, Derrida and Foucault in an Hour, and discovered that the author Paul Strathern much prefers Wittgenstein to all three, I was curious to read his "Wittgenstein in an Hour".

As with the other books we get a lot about Wittgenstein's life - he appears as an extraordinary individual - being born into one of the wealthiest families in Austria...
Published on 6 Oct 2012 by J. Mann


Most Helpful First | Newest First

9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Please stop doing philosophy because Wittgenstein said so, 6 Oct 2012
By 
J. Mann - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Wittgenstein: Philosophy in an Hour (Kindle Edition)
Having read Heidegger, Derrida and Foucault in an Hour, and discovered that the author Paul Strathern much prefers Wittgenstein to all three, I was curious to read his "Wittgenstein in an Hour".

As with the other books we get a lot about Wittgenstein's life - he appears as an extraordinary individual - being born into one of the wealthiest families in Austria he assumes he can do what he wants. When he decides he wants to learn philosophy what could be more obvious than to... sit and read philosophy ? .. no that's not right, he didn't do that.. he travelled to Cambridge home to perhaps the greatest living philosopher Bertrand Russell and decided to call him day and night asking all sorts of questions that came into his head about life, the universe and everything.

Fortunately for Wittgenstein Russell was a forgiving sort and appeared to enjoy the vigor and enthusiasm Wittgenstein had for the subject, and engaged him in long conversations on the subject.

To show how much he was actually paying attention to Russell when the First World War broke out Wittgenstein didn't follow Russell's lead and become a conscientious objector but instead signed up to fight in the Austrian army, keeping a notebook of his philosophical thoughts.

After the war Wittgenstein - still without so much as an O-level (or whatever the equivalent was then) in philosophy managed to get Russell to put his weight behind getting his notebook published and released the only philosophy book published in his lifetime the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus in which Wittgenstein cut the Gordian Knot of philosophy by declaring that doing philosophy was just not logically possible.

You might be forgiven for asking why he published the book if it`s contents were nonsense but it seemed it had to be done in order to let everyone else know they had to stop. Slightly incredibly the book was a success and lots more people started writing about how philosophy was indeed impossible and really should be stopped if not immediately then as soon as everyone knew it had to stop.

This continued for some years, during which time Wittgenstein went off to do something more interesting - giving away all his money to his sisters, working as a teacher in a village school in Austria where he was equally feared and loathed, then progressing on to working as a gardener, and also designing a horrible house for his sister.

After this Wittgenstein thought of having another bash at philosophy - again writing down his ideas as as a series of notes that would later be published after his death as "Philosophical Investigations". For Strathern this book "is a bitter disappointment" - it seems it is necessary to do philosophy again after all, but only to "untie the knots". Philosophical problems - it turns out - are a series of mistakes of language, and it is therefore the (new) job of philosophy to show how these mistakes came about, and *then* philosophy can end.

Strathern concludes as follows "we have learned to do without God, and it looks as if we will learn to do without philosophy. It will now, alas, join the ranks of subjects which are completed (and have become completely spurious), such as alchemy, astrology, platonic love, and stylitism".

I said at the beginning of this review I read this book after reading Strathern's books on Heidegger, Derrida and Foucault. Of course these three (un)wise men thought it is still important to carry on doing philosophy, not realising Wittgenstein had told everyone to stop ages ago.

Well - if you want to stop doing philosophy Paul Strathern, please stop. The only trouble is people will still keep asking the questions, and if philosophers don't answer them others will. I read someone recently suggesting the rise of fundamentalism is at least in part due to the fact that philosophers have stopped engaging with society, so we no longer have philosophers as examples to teach us how to think clearly and rationally.

Whether that is true or not who knows, but philosophy is still important. There are groups such as "Philosophy in Pubs" where people can meet and talk about the important issues in life, there is the magazine "Philosophy Now" which provides an accessible and non-academic series of philosophical discussions and articles. We need more not less philosophy.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Interesting Man!, 13 May 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Wittgenstein: Philosophy in an Hour (Kindle Edition)
I warmed to Wittgenstein when I read he never rode his bike over worms! I admired his philosophy of Life being a "Moral Duty."
He was as much of an unlikely kind of Avatar, as a philosopher and I wish he had found more of a happy niche for himself, in his oftentimes black comedy of a lifetime.
This small book is a useful introduction.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3.0 out of 5 stars good, 18 Oct 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Wittgenstein: Philosophy in an Hour (Kindle Edition)
Easy to read, kinda made me not like Wittgenstein - and is more about his life than his philosophy - but nevertheless a interesting read
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars A good primer to Wittgensteinian philosophy, 1 Oct 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Wittgenstein: Philosophy in an Hour (Kindle Edition)
Generally speaking, Paul Strathern's introduction to the life, philosophical thought and works of this eccentric man is a good primer, devoid of technical jargon but comprehensible enough to elucidate the general thrust and tenor of Wittgenstein's philosophical musings. The book is not, by any means, comprehensive but there is sufficient information to intrigue and pique the curiosity of philosophical aficionados to delve further into the life and philosophy of this exceptional, complex man.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Oversimplistic and unhelpful, 31 Dec 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Wittgenstein: Philosophy in an Hour (Kindle Edition)
Nothing more than a biography, and critical of his philosophy in a way that reeks of misunderstanding (or more correctly non-understanding). Don't bother.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 30 July 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Wittgenstein: Philosophy in an Hour (Kindle Edition)
Good introduction
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars One big flaw, 16 Oct 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Wittgenstein: Philosophy in an Hour (Kindle Edition)
This little book is very well written and largely achieves its aim - to provide a succinct overview of Wittgenstein and his philosophy, both renowned for their depth and complexity. For this, Strathern deserves plaudits. I was however, deeply disappointed by his abrupt dismissal of Philosophical Investigations. This is one of only two books authored by the subject in his lifetime. Though Strathern is entitled to his opinion, such a key text should have been given more analysis and coverage, if one`s aim is introduce the reader to this important figure in 20th century philosophy. To me, this is a serious flaw. Tractatus is afforded appropriate discussion; PI deserves the same treatment, regardless of whether it is equal to Tractatus. This alone is my reason for giving this book 2, rather than 4 or 5 stars. However, I still feel it is worth reading and I will have a look at Strathern's other texts.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Wittgenstein: Philosophy in an Hour
£1.49
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews