Wittgenstein and Language Games

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  • Created on: 25-03-21 15:15
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  • Wittgenstein and Language Games
    • Ludwig Wittgenstein
      • 1889-1951
      • Austrian philosopher who taught at Cambridge University
      • A student of Bertrand Russell
      • Only published one work in his lifetime - 'Tractatus Logico - Philosophius'
      • There are '2 Wittgensteins' - Early and Later
    • Language Games
      • 1.For Wittgenstein language is a game and talking or writing about different things is playing a different game
      • 2. Words have literal meaning from the dictionary, but depending on the game they mean different things
      • 3. Different concepts (e.g. science, religion, poetry, football) have different 'Forms of Life'
        • The meaning of words are different depending on which form of life is discussed
          • Some argue that 'Forms of Life' are broad but some argue that they are narrow
    • Don Cupitt's Non-Cognitive Analysis of Wittgenstein
      • 1. God is not an objective thing in reality (non-realism)
      • 2. There is no understanding outside of the language game about God
        • This seems to misinterpret what Wittgenstein said about us constantly learning new games and rules in order to converse and understand people
      • There is question about whether Wittgenstein's theory of language games should interpreted as cognitive or non-cognitive
        • Cognitive: what religious language is talking about is real
        • Non-Cognitive: what religious language is talking about in not real (does not correspond to anything in reality)
    • D.Z. Phillips' Cognitive Analysis of Wittgenstein
      • 3. Religion and science are different forms of life therefore we cannot use the same rules to talk about both disciplines
      • 2. We can learn the rules but belief is different to prove and so leads to difference of opinions
      • 1. God is an objective thing in reality (realism)
        • God is a different thing to everything other thing in reality and so cannot be subject to scientific discovery
      • There is question about whether Wittgenstein's theory of language games should interpreted as cognitive or non-cognitive
        • Cognitive: what religious language is talking about is real
        • Non-Cognitive: what religious language is talking about in not real (does not correspond to anything in reality)
    • Analogy or Language Games
      • Aquinas vs Wittgenstein
        • In terms of religious language, Aquinas is specifically using analogy to address the problem of the terms we use about God
        • Wittgenstein's language games is more about what language does and how we see language
      • Both Aquinas and Wittgenstein were concerned with conceptual duty
        • They also both focus on the operation of language which leads to understanding - Anthony Kenny

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