[Ludwig Wittgenstein] Philosophical Investigations

  • Title: Philosophical Investigations: The German Text, with a Revised English Translation 50th Anniversary Commemorative Edition
  • Author: Ludwig Wittgenstein
  • Published: 1953
  • Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell; 3 edition (Dec 1 2001)
  • ISBN-10: 0631231277
  • ISBN-13: 978-0631231271

In his previous work ‘Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus’, Wittgenstein focused on analyzing language in a critical sense. He tried to draw the limit of language and by clarifying its use and meaning it is possible to make clear what philosophical problems are.

In Philosophical Investigations, Wittgenstein broadened his view of language and speech. He did not abandon the previous views but rather he focused on the one type of language games. Language is not just the mappings between words (signifiers) and meanings (signified). It functions in many different ways depending on how it is used (what kind of games are you in).

As a philosophy book,it is quite easy to read. At the same time, it is hard to digest its content. Wittgenstein asks you very basic questions continuously. The questions are just too obvious so they cannot be answered. You might feel like you are being asked  “why 2+2 = 4?” kind of questions one after another. That’s why this book should be read if you want to feel how you are feeling while you’re philosophizing…


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