Monday, January 5, 2015

Lives of the Philosophers, Pt. 4

Ludwig Wittgenstein had for a father one of the richest men in Europe as well as a one-armed brother who became a famous concert pianist. His other three brothers committed suicide. Ludwig himself studied engineering until a “constant, indescribable, almost pathological state of agitation” drove him to study the philosophy of mathematics. Either philosophy or mathematics alone would have been too easy, I guess. Seriously, this guy was so smart you needed to be Bertrand Russell simply to misunderstand him properly. I can't actually read Wittgenstein. It's like watching a powerful motor rev itself to pieces on a static dynamometer.

1 comment:

Aggie said...

To fully appreciate him, one really needed to see Wittgenstein live. Setting the stage for those who came after him---Professor Irwin Corey was a disciple---he had people rolling in the aisles with his hilarious double-talk and non sequiturs. Lest we forget, it was Wittgenstein, the yuk-meister himself, who said:

"A serious and good philosophical work could be written consisting entirely of jokes."

What a ham!