Gordon Baker, Wittgensteinian Philosophical Conceptions and Perspicuous Representation: the Possibility of Multidimensional Logical Descriptions

Main Article Content

Oskari Kuusela

Abstract

This paper discusses Gordon Baker’s interpretation of the later Wittgenstein, in particular his interpretation of the notion of Wittgensteinian philosophical conceptions (Auffassungen) and the notions of non-exclusivity, local incompatibility, non-additivity and global pluralism which Baker uses to characterize Wittgensteinian conceptions. On the basis of this discussion, and a critique of certain features of Baker’s interpretation of Wittgensteinian conceptions, I introduce the notion of a multidimensional logical description of language use, explaining how this notion, which Baker’s interpretation excludes, constitutes and important element of the later Wittgenstein’s philosophical method of clarification and perspicuous representation. I conclude by explaining how Baker’s problematic notions of local incompatibility and non-additivity, if they are seen in the light of Wittgenstein’s criticisms of certain views of the completeness of philosophical or logical accounts, nevertheless point in the right direction.

Section
Articles
Author Biography

Oskari Kuusela, University of East Anglia

Oskari Kuusela is a Senior Lecturer in philosophy at the University of East Anglia, UK. His main research interests relate to philosophical methodology, the philosophy of logic and language, and ethics. He is the author of The Struggle against Dogmatism: Wittgenstein and the Concept of Philosophy (Harvard UP, 2008), Key Terms in Ethics (Continuum, 2011), and a co-editor of The Oxford Handbook of Wittgenstein (Oxford UP, 2011/2014) as well as Wittgenstein’s Interpreters: Essays in Memory of Gordon Baker (Wiley, 2007/2013).

References

Baker, Gordon, Wittgenstein, Frege and the Vienna Circle. Oxford: Blackwell, 1988.

Baker, Gordon. Wittgenstein’s Method: Neglected Aspects. Morris, Katherine, ed. Oxford: Blackwell, 2004.

Baker, Gordon and Hacker, P.M.S., Wittgenstein, Rules, Grammar and Necessity. An Analytical Commentary on the Philosophical Investigations, Volume 2. Oxford: Blackwell, 1985.

Hacker, P.M.S., “Gordon Baker’s Late Interpretation of Wittgenstein”, in G. Kahane, E. Kanterian and O. Kuusela, eds., Wittgenstein and His Interpreters: Essays in Memory of Gordon Baker. Oxford: Blackwell, 2007.

Kuusela, Oskari, The Struggle Against Dogmatism: Wittgenstein and the Concept of Philosophy. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2008.

Kuusela, Oskari. “Wittgenstein’s Method of Conceptual Investigation and Concept Formation in Psychology”, in T. Racine and K. Slaney eds., A Wittgensteinian Perspective on the Use of Conceptual Analysis in Psychology. Palgrave Macmillan, Houndmills, 2013.

Kuusela, Oskari. “Logic and Ideality: Wittgenstein’s Way beyond Apriorism, Empiricism and Conventionalism in the Philosophy of Logic”, in Nuno Venturinha ed., The Textual Genesis of Wittgenstein’s Philosophical Investigations. New York: Routledge, 2013a.

Wittgenstein, Ludwig. Preliminary Studies for the “Philosophical Investigations” Generally Known as the Blue and Brown Books. Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1958. (BB)

Wittgenstein, Ludwig. Philosophical Grammar. Rhees, R., ed. Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1974. (PG)

Wittgenstein, Ludwig. Philosophical Investigations, Second Edition. G. E. M Anscombe and R. Rhees, eds. Oxford: Blackwell, 1997. Revised fourth edition, P. M. S. Hacker and Joachim Schulte, eds. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2009. (PI)

Wittgenstein, Ludwig. Philosophical Occasions 1912-51. J. Klagge and A. Nordmann eds. Indianapolis and Cambridge: Hackett, 1993. (PO)

Wittgenstein, Ludwig. Remarks on the Foundations of Mathematics. G.E.M Anscombe, R. Rhees and G.H. von Wright, eds. Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1998. (RFM)

Wittgenstein, Ludwig. Wittgenstein’s Lectures, Cambridge 1932-35. Ambrose, Alice, ed. Oxford: Blackwell, 1979. (AWL)

Wittgenstein, Ludwig. Wittgenstein’s Nachlass: The Bergen Electronic Edition. The Wittgenstein Archives at the University of Bergen, eds. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000. (References by manu/typescript number.)

Wittgenstein, Ludwig. Zettel. Anscombe , G. E. M. and von Wright, G. H., eds. Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1967. (Z)