MU Philosophy Society Event

Tuesday, April 25, 2023 - 10:15

This paper investigates the clothing metaphor in Wittgenstein’s Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus at remark 4.002. I consider the antecedents and origins of 4.002, in particular, of the fourth paragraph that contains the metaphor, and also suggest and argue for potential source texts for the third and fourth paragraphs. In particular, early sources for the Tractatus, such as the Notes on Logic and the Notebooks 1914–1916, letters, and other manuscripts and early drafts are considered, especially MS104 and the Prototractatus where the metaphor appears at remarks 4.0014 & 4.00141. The place of the metaphor among the context of the elucidations of these early manuscripts is discussed. I also consider similar uses of the metaphor that are present in the work of Hertz, Boltzmann, Frege, Kraus, and others. Some of these texts and potential influences are more compelling than those previously adduced or recognised in the literature. The appearances of the metaphor in the work of these authors and their potential influence upon Wittgenstein’s work is discussed.

Dr Keith Begley is an Assistant Lecturer in the Department of Philosophy, Maynooth University. He studied Mental and Moral Science (Philosophy) at Trinity College Dublin, and holds an M.A. and a Ph.D. in Philosophy from The University of Dublin. He also holds an M.Sc. in Computer Science from University College Dublin. He has published articles, book chapters, and conference papers on philosophy of language and linguistics, philosophy of artificial intelligence, medical epistemology, computational philology, Heraclitus, Jerrold J. Katz, and Wittgenstein. He currently teaches modules on analytic philosophy, epistemology, and philosophy of the digital age, and is a coordinator for the B.Sc. in Computational Thinking, at Maynooth University.