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Metaphysical Reading(s) of TLP


Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus (TLP) turns hundred years of its publication in the year 2021. The book has received several interpretations during this period of hundred years. However, in the last three decades, the interpretations of TLP have taken a very tenacious position with regard to the debates among scholars concerning whether there is any metaphysical significance in the text. The debates primarily offshoot in the rise of anti-metaphysical or often known as resolute reading that challenges the standard or metaphysical reading. The present paper, however, goes beyond this debate between the resolute and standard reading of TLP. The paper aims at addressing various types of metaphysical reading(s) that has not been perhaps the centre of discussion because the resolute reading takes on only standard reading. Thus, the present paper attempts to show the variety of metaphysical interpretations of the text in some of the recent literatures.

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  1. See, Hintikka and Hintikka, Investigating Wittgenstein, Basil Blackwell, UK, 1986, p.31.

  2. See, I.M. Copi and Robert W. Beard, ed. Essays on Wittgenstein’s Tractatus, Routledge & Kegan Paul, London, 1966.

  3. See TLP, aphorism 4.12 and 4.121.

  4. See Ibid, aphorism 6.421, also see “A Lecture on Ethics”, The Philosophical Review, Vol.74, No.1, (Jan., 1965), pp.3–12.

  5. The debate between standard and resolute reading of TLP is also discussed in the following paper; Tarai, Ashoka Kumar, (2021), Anti-Metaphysical readings of Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, Problemos, Vol.99.

  6. See John W. Cook, Wittgenstein’s Metaphysics, Cambridge University Press, 1994, p.xvii.

  7. Ibid, p.8.

  8. See Jaakko Hintikka, “On Wittgenstein’s Solipsism” in Essays on Wittgenstein’s Tractatus, eds. I.M. Copi and Robert W. Beard, Routledge & Kegan Paul, London, 1966, pp.157–161.

  9. See Ludwig Wittgenstein, Culture and Value, eds. G.H. von Wright and Heikki Nyman, trans. Peter Winch, Basil Blackwell, Oxford, 1980, for the primacy of the moral point of view.


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Tarai, A.K. Metaphysical Reading(s) of TLP. J. Indian Counc. Philos. Res. 40, 1–14 (2023).

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