Philosophy 186b

Spring 2011

Number Title Instructor Days/time Room
186b Later Wittgenstein Stroud TuTh 2-3:30 210 Wheeler

A course of close reading and detailed discussion of central parts of Wittgenstein’s Philosophical Investigations. The aim is to understand Wittgenstein’s later work and its philosophical significance by responding as directly and as sympathetically as possible to the problems and lines of thought as they are presented in that book. Some other works of Wittgenstein and some interpretative commentary will be consulted occasionally, but the emphasis throughout will be on that book alone. Because the book embodies a conception of philosophy as a certain kind of activity, the course will be of greatest interest and value to those willing to engage in philosophical reflection of their own in response to Wittgenstein’s thinking. That requires careful attention to the text, active participation in classroom discussion in response to others’ contributions, and an effort to keep sharpening one’s own understanding of the issues in question. The course is meant to be as much as possible a course in doing philosophy, not just a commentary on somebody’s philosophy.