Wittgenstein on the Relationship Between Individual and Community

Chantal Bax


Wittgenstein clearly emphasizes the collective instead of the individual in his later
writings. This may seem to undermine, among other things, our concept of personal
responsibility. Wittgenstein’s emphasis is however only irreconcilable with this
concept if individual and community are taken to be diametrically opposed. I argue
that Wittgenstein does not take them to be so. On my reading, nothing could be
farther from a Wittgensteinian picture of community than the image of a larger whole
into which individuals are absorbed and to which they transfer all


philosophy; 20th century philosophy; Wittgenstein Ludwig; subject; individuality; community; social theory of mind; social theory of meaning; rethinking vs unthinking; personal responsibility; body; fibre; subjectivity

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