Ludwig Wittgenstein's Nachlaß consists of approximately 20,000 pages of manuscripts and typescripts, which Wittgenstein left behind on his death in 1951. In his will, Wittgenstein gave his friends and colleagues G.E.M Anscombe, Rush Rhees and Georg Henrik von Wright, all the copyright in his unpublished writings.

Beginning with the publication of Philosophical Investigations in 1953, parts of the Nachlaß were subsequently published in book form by or under the auspices of the Trustees. Together with the Tractatus, these books have provided the foundation for Wittgenstein's world-wide recognition as one of the most significant and influential philosophers of our century. But a substantial part of his writings remained unpublished. In addition, the existing publications of the Nachlaß had been prepared according to different editorial principles and some which consist of selections from different manuscripts lack detailed documentation of the sources. On this background, it comes as no surprise that many Wittgenstein scholars desired a comprehensive Wittgenstein-Gesamtausgabe. The Wittgenstein Archives thought this goal was best achieved with the help of a complete machine-readable version of Wittgenstein's Nachlaß.

The aims of the Wittgenstein Archives at the University of Bergen included the transcription of Wittgenstein's Nachlaß into machine-readable form, the development of software for the presentation and analysis of the texts, the provision of access to the machine-readable transcriptions for visitors and scholars at the University of Bergen, and the publication of an electronic facsimile and machine-readable transcriptions of Wittgenstein's Nachlaß on CD-ROM.

In cooperation with Oxford University Press, the Wittgenstein Archives published the entire Nachlaß in four volumes as Wittgenstein's Nachlass. The Bergen Electronic Edition. Each volume contains two CD-ROMs, one with facsimiles and one with retrieval software and updated infobases of the corresponding transcriptions.

The Wittgenstein Archives also started a series of working papers.

The Wittgenstein Archives was externally oriented to a high degree, with lectures, publications and international cooperation. Foreign visiting scholars at the Wittgenstein Archives contributed to the academic work of the Wittgenstein Archives as well as to that of other parties at the University of Bergen, i.a. by holding seminars and lectures.Visiting scholars were permitted to work at the Wittgenstein Archives and make use of the machine-readable transcriptions prepared by the project. Visiting scholars have also had access to a complete collection of copies of Wittgenstein's Nachlaß.

The Wittgenstein Archives enjoyed a close international cooperation, i.a. with the Brenner Archives in Innsbruck, Austria, the international Text Encoding Initiative (TEI), Oxford University Press (OUP), England, and the University of Hertfordshire, England.

The Wittgenstein Archives, Allégt. 27, N-5007 Bergen, Norge
+47 55 58 94 74
+47 55 58 94 70

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Last updated 07.11.2000