NOTES FOR LECTURES ON WITTGENSTEIN'S TRACTATUS

I. Wittgenstein's intentions
 

A. The "stimulation" from
a) Frege
b) Russell
c) Heinrich Hertz
d) his own existential situation


B. What his intentions were assumed to be

a) by Russell
b) by the positivists

II. Why the book is so difficult
 

A. its "style"
B. it is concerned with what can't be said

III. What can be said

A. Language
1. Assumptions of a logically perfect language
a) concerned to communicate true/false information
b) posed as a "what if" Frege's point of departure is taken to its ultimate conclusion
c) Wittgenstein's later self-criticism
2. "Meaning"
a) Tractatus's "meaning" = Frege's "reference" (Bedeutung)
b) "Sense" (Sinn) same as Frege's but for Tractatus "names" have no sense
3. Names
a) mean (refer to) objects
b) to understand a name is to know the object which it means
c) to know an object is to know its "form" -all (actual or possible) configurations into which the object can enter
d) to understand a name is to be able to understand all (true
or false) possible propositions into which it can enter
4. Propositions - the "Picture Theory of Meaning"
a) are the only bearers of "truth value"
b) only propositions have "sense"
i. a proposition shows its sense
ii. the sense of a proposition cannot be said, only shown
iii. as a configuration of objects -the names themselves are objects- a proposition "shows" its sense by               configuring the names in a way which stands for the way the objects, to which the names refer, are configured in a state of affairs.
iv. the elements of the proposition which are not names of objects arrange the objects in a "state of affairs"
iv. the sense of a proposition is a "thought"
v. the meaning (reference) of a proposition is a state of affairs
vi. the reference of true propositions are called "facts"
vii. of all possible states of affairs, "facts" are the actual ones
c) have a "logical form" in virtue of which they can show ("picture") a possible state of affairs
i. to understand a proposition is to understand its logical form
ii. logical form cannot be said, it can only be exhibited
B. Ontology
1. objects
a) must be simple
i. concerned that there must be such objects
ii. not concerned with what they must be
iii. simple objects can have no parts
iv. that which has parts is complex, composed of simples
v. since change is in the configuration of the simples, simples cannot change
b) have a "form"
i. determines all possible configurations
ii. defines the "logical space" of possibilities into which the object can enter
2. states of affairs
a) are the meanings (the referents) of propositions
b) present the possible configurations of objects, not simple
c) all possible concatenations of objects (determined by their forms) defines the logical space of all possible states of affairs
d) all change is change in the configuration of objects, for objects, being simple, cannot change
d) can be actual or non-actual
3. facts
a) all actual states of affairs
b) are what can be said
c) language is the instrument for picturing facts
4. the world
a) the totality of facts
b) is that of which we can speak
c) that which is outside of the world (is not a fact) must passed over in silence
5. the "self"
a) is always the subject which takes the world as its object
b) an extensionless point on the circumference of the world
c) there are no facts about the self
d) cannot be spoken of
C. Logic
1. laws of logic are all tautologies
a) they are true because they are true in every logically possible world
b) the are uninformative about this world
c) they are the "logical scaffolding" of the world
2. tautologies and contradictions have no sense
a) picture all possibilities are no possibilities
b) laws of logic are "non-sensical"
3. all propositions which are not non-sensical are either
a) atomic propositions showing a simple state of affairs
b) truth functional compounds of a)
4. to understand the "truth conditions" of a proposition -the state of affairs which would make it true or make it false- is to understand the proposition
IV. What cannot be said
 
A. The logical form of propositions
a) the intention of the picture theory
b) the link from language to world cannot be language
B. Philosophy
a) not a science
b) no facts of philosophy
c) cannot be body of propositions
d) an activity by which one comes to know what cannot be said
e) Wittgensteinian notion of "analysis"
f) the ladder pulled up behind oneself once one has climbed it
C. Ethics
a) concerned with the "meaning of life"
i) not linguistic meaning
ii) life = world
iii) solipsism = realism
b) the "good"
i) only facts can be said
ii) facts simply are
iii) to say "this fact is good" is to step outside the world
iv) what lies outside the world cannot be said
v) there can be no science of ethics
vi) the "good" cannot be said
D. The Mystic
a) what can be said is what things are
b) that things are cannot be said
c) wondering and the possibility that things be otherwise