WAB: "Fragments" | The following contribution is an excerpt from Lars Hertzberg: "Trying to keep philosophy honest", in: Alois Pichler and Simo Säätelä (eds.): Wittgenstein: The philosopher and his works, Working Papers from the Wittgenstein Archives at the University of Bergen no. 17, Wittgenstein Archives at the University of Bergen (WAB) 2005, pp. 74-89. Publication on WAB's website with kind permission from the author and the editors (2005.4.7).
Lars Hertzberg: Trying to keep philosophy honest
One may feel inclined to seek for an explanation of this change; however, it would be hard to do so without indulging in idle speculation or venting ones prejudices. What I should like to try to do, rather, is to formulate what it is that the analytical world will be losing if it persists in turning its back on the approaches he advocated. In doing so, I shall inevitably be expressing my own (not necessarily original) understanding of what is distinctive and worthwhile about Wittgensteins contribution to philosophy.
This aspect is made explicit in some of the manuscripts preparatory for Philosophical Investigations more clearly than it is in the Investigations themselves.1 In Culture and Value we read the oft-quoted remark (CV p. 24, from 1931):
Work on philosophy like work in architecture in many respects is really more [rather] work on oneself. On ones own conception. On how one sees things. (And what one expects from them.)And in 1947 Wittgenstein wrote (CV p. 68):
In fact it is already a seed of good originality not to want to be what you are not.In the Big Typescript from the early 30s, there is the following chapter heading:
DIFFICULTY OF PHILOSOPHY NOT THE INTELLECTUAL DIFFICULTY OF THE SCIENCES, BUT THE DIFFICULTY OF A CHANGE OF ATTITUDE. RESISTANCES OF THE WILL MUST BE OVERCOME.2What makes the difficulties of philosophy so intractable, Wittgenstein thought, is the fact that in grappling with them we must constantly struggle against our intellectual temptations. I shall try to bring out the nature of this concern by focusing on certain themes in Wittgensteins later thought. What I shall have to say has the form of a meditation on three remarks by Wittgenstein. My comments on them can be seen as an attempt to come at the same theme from three slightly different directions.