Thread: wittgenstein against gay marriage ?

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  1. #61
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    I think the fact that he visited the Soviet Union at a time that there was an intense boycott of the Soviet Union was a sign of political support. One does not necessarily have to use words to show support.
    And what did he support? Something that happened in 1917, or what was actually going on in the SU at the time of his visit?

    The revolution or Stalin's Termidor?

    Luís Henrique
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    Hi Luís,

    This is a good question:
    Here is what one biographical site says:


    On 12 September Wittgenstein arrived in Leningrad. There he met the author and educator Guryevich at the Northern Institute, then an autonomous faculty of Leningrad University. On the evening of the following day he travelled on to Moscow, arriving there on the morning of the 14th. Here he had contacts with various western Europeans and Americans, including the correspondent of the Daily Worker, Pat Sloane. Most of his discussions, however, were with scientists, for example the young mathematician Yanovskaya and the philosopher Yushevich from Moscow University, who were both close to so-called Mach Marxism and the Vienna Circle. He was invited by the philosopher Tatiana Nikolayeva Gornstein, a member of the Soviet Academy of Sciences, to teach philosophy at Leningrad University. He traveled to Kazakhstan, where he was offered a chair at the famous university where Tolstoy once studied. On 1 October he was back in Cambridge. The trip was shorter than planned, and it appears that he had given up the idea of settling in Russia.
    His friend Gilbert Pattison, who picked him up from the ship on his return, recalled that Wittgenstein’s view was that he could not live there himself: One could live there, but only if one kept in mind the whole time that one could never speak one’s mind. ... It is as though one were to spend the rest of one’s life in an army, any army, and that is a rather difficult thing for people who are educated. (Interview with Pattison)
    The situation was quite complex at the time. He visited the Soviet Union in 1935 and I believe things got a lot worse only in 1936 when the Moscow show trials started.

    I think people underestimate the effect Adolf Hitler had on Stalin. Stalin was in no way the equivalent of Hitler, but he was pragmatic. He noted that Adolf Hitler had ripped up all democratic norms violently and ruthlessly eliminating his opposition from1933 through 1935. He was preparing the country for immediate war against the Soviet Union. Stalin simply adopted the violent wartime measures that had worked for Hitler. We should recognize that it was done in a modified form and was not the same as the insane and mindless sadism of the Nazis.

    In any case, I think the important thing to remember about Wittgenstein is that he was not anti-gay marriage nor anti-Soviet. I don't think his philosophy is particularly Marxist, but neither is it anti-Marxist. There are many things in it quite compatible with a Marxist outlook. He was anti-metaphysical and understood that language only had meaning within an historical-human context.

    And what did he support? Something that happened in 1917, or what was actually going on in the SU at the time of his visit?

    The revolution or Stalin's Termidor?

    Luís Henrique
  3. #63
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    Hi Luís,

    This is a good question:
    Here is what one biographical site says:

    On 12 September Wittgenstein arrived in Leningrad. There he met the author and educator Guryevich at the Northern Institute, then an autonomous faculty of Leningrad University. On the evening of the following day he travelled on to Moscow, arriving there on the morning of the 14th. Here he had contacts with various western Europeans and Americans, including the correspondent of the Daily Worker, Pat Sloane. Most of his discussions, however, were with scientists, for example the young mathematician Yanovskaya and the philosopher Yushevich from Moscow University, who were both close to so-called Mach Marxism and the Vienna Circle. He was invited by the philosopher Tatiana Nikolayeva Gornstein, a member of the Soviet Academy of Sciences, to teach philosophy at Leningrad University. He traveled to Kazakhstan, where he was offered a chair at the famous university where Tolstoy once studied. On 1 October he was back in Cambridge. The trip was shorter than planned, and it appears that he had given up the idea of settling in Russia.
    His friend Gilbert Pattison, who picked him up from the ship on his return, recalled that Wittgenstein’s view was that he could not live there himself: One could live there, but only if one kept in mind the whole time that one could never speak one’s mind. ... It is as though one were to spend the rest of one’s life in an army, any army, and that is a rather difficult thing for people who are educated. (Interview with Pattison)
    So this shows that he actually didn't support Stalinism. Good for him. What does that say about his grasp of political situations? Hadn't he noticed the nature of the Stalinist regime before going there? What were his particular dellusions about the regime? Did he ever believe it had anything to do with the working class? (Other people failed, or even refused, to see what Stalinism was, out of a misguided loyalty to the very Revolution that Stalinism betrayed - but how would that be the case for a thinker who, as far as I am informed, never spent two seconds of his time wondering about the Russian Revolution?)

    In any case, I think the important thing to remember about Wittgenstein is that he was not anti-gay marriage nor anti-Soviet. I don't think his philosophy is particularly Marxist, but neither is it anti-Marxist. There are many things in it quite compatible with a Marxist outlook. He was anti-metaphysical and understood that language only had meaning within an historical-human context.
    No, he wasn't anti-gay marriage; he doesn't seem to have been pro-gay marriage either. This was not what he was thinking about; his subject was different, and he cared little for whatever was not his subject - at least at at a theoretical level.

    His philosophy isn't anti-Marxist in the sence that he didn't purposefully set out to find a theoretical refutation of Marxism (like Weber or Böhm-Bawerk, for instance, did). I am not sure at all that its foundations aren't mutually exclusive regarding the foundations of Marxism. At best, his views are taken from a different point, implying a wholly different perspective.

    "Anti-metaphysical" means different things for different people, and I am far from sure that his peculiar way of being "anti-metaphysical" shouldn't be considered "metaphysical" itself from a Marxist point of view (and, conversely, that he wouldn't dismiss Marxism as a form of "metaphysics" if he ever deigned to pay any attention to Marxism).

    And I think the part on "understood that language only had meaning within an historical-human context" is simply false. He lacked any sence of History; doesn't seem to have been interested in History at all; his method in Philosophical Investigations manifestly fails to take History in account, everything being phrased and considered as if language magically emerged ex-nihilo a second ago. He doesn't even seem to take into consideration the differences and contrasts between different modern languages - he talks about "looking at how words are used" but doesn't seem to notice the contrasts between the way they are used, for instance, in German and English, two languages he was fluent in.

    Luís Henrique
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    Hi Luis Henrique,

    I haven't read "Philosophical Investigations" in quite a while, ten years, and only remember Wittgenstein emphasizing the functionality of language and his comparison of it to a game with rules. It seems to me to be an important and even progressive concept, fully compatible with the idea that the workingclass can change the rules of capitalism at any moment through a worldwide revolution.

    I am often amazed by how influenced the great minds of the early 20th century were by Marx. They are sometimes incorrectly classed as bourgeois and their ideas dismissed as bourgeois, but if one examines them carefully, one finds they have developed many ideas that Marx briefly noted in his studies.

    For example, reading Sylvia Plath's "A Room of One's Own," one is astonished to find this feminist writer expounding a clearly materialist philosophy that women's oppression historically has an economic base. Sigmund Freud's amazing analysis of symbol transformation in dreams can be seen as borrowing from Marx's analysis of the transformation of commodities in Das Kapital. Could any of D.H. Lawrence's or James Joyce's great novels exploring the lives and thoughts of working class people have been written without the influence of Marx and the workingclass socialist movement he helped to organize? The debt of Eugene O'Neil and Arthur Miller to Marx is clear and obvious, even if their positions in society and capitalist censorship forced them to be circumspect in their conclusions.

    It is a mistake to not recognize the influence of Marxist ideas in other fields because they do not follow the exact same format or structure as Marx did. Marx was also a product of his time. We have to see Wittgenstein the same way.

    Warmly,

    Philosopher Jay

    So this shows that he actually didn't support Stalinism. Good for him. What does that say about his grasp of political situations? Hadn't he noticed the nature of the Stalinist regime before going there? What were his particular dellusions about the regime? Did he ever believe it had anything to do with the working class? (Other people failed, or even refused, to see what Stalinism was, out of a misguided loyalty to the very Revolution that Stalinism betrayed - but how would that be the case for a thinker who, as far as I am informed, never spent two seconds of his time wondering about the Russian Revolution?)

    No, he wasn't anti-gay marriage; he doesn't seem to have been pro-gay marriage either. This was not what he was thinking about; his subject was different, and he cared little for whatever was not his subject - at least at at a theoretical level.

    His philosophy isn't anti-Marxist in the sence that he didn't purposefully set out to find a theoretical refutation of Marxism (like Weber or Böhm-Bawerk, for instance, did). I am not sure at all that its foundations aren't mutually exclusive regarding the foundations of Marxism. At best, his views are taken from a different point, implying a wholly different perspective.

    "Anti-metaphysical" means different things for different people, and I am far from sure that his peculiar way of being "anti-metaphysical" shouldn't be considered "metaphysical" itself from a Marxist point of view (and, conversely, that he wouldn't dismiss Marxism as a form of "metaphysics" if he ever deigned to pay any attention to Marxism).

    And I think the part on "understood that language only had meaning within an historical-human context" is simply false. He lacked any sence of History; doesn't seem to have been interested in History at all; his method in Philosophical Investigations manifestly fails to take History in account, everything being phrased and considered as if language magically emerged ex-nihilo a second ago. He doesn't even seem to take into consideration the differences and contrasts between different modern languages - he talks about "looking at how words are used" but doesn't seem to notice the contrasts between the way they are used, for instance, in German and English, two languages he was fluent in.

    Luís Henrique
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    I haven't read "Philosophical Investigations" in quite a while, ten years, and only remember Wittgenstein emphasizing the functionality of language and his comparison of it to a game with rules. It seems to me to be an important and even progressive concept, fully compatible with the idea that the workingclass can change the rules of capitalism at any moment through a worldwide revolution.
    It looks to me much more like an investigation into linguistics; its merits and demerits seem much more linked with that than with politics.

    I am often amazed by how influenced the great minds of the early 20th century were by Marx. They are sometimes incorrectly classed as bourgeois and their ideas dismissed as bourgeois, but if one examines them carefully, one finds they have developed many ideas that Marx briefly noted in his studies.
    I think even the openly bourgeois thinkers were more influenced by Marx than they would like to think. But to be influenced by Marx (Max Weber, for instance, certainly was) is one thing; to contribute to the theoretical advancement of a socialist revolution is quite different.

    Now, don't take me wrong. There are things that are non-political, and are important. One could like Wagner's music while despising his politics. We should not feel the necessity to refuse his music because of his politics, nor of fantasising that he had better politics to justify our listening of his work. The same stands for scientists. Einstein was a wishy-washy socialdemocratic petty-bourgeois; it doesn't mean that his physics wasn't decisive for the advancement of our understandment of the universe. Conversely, his physics was decisive for the advancement of our understandment of the universe; it doesn't mean that he was a revolutionary.

    For example, reading Sylvia Plath's "A Room of One's Own," one is astonished to find this feminist writer expounding a clearly materialist philosophy that women's oppression historically has an economic base.
    I haven't read her, but I wouldn't find astonishing that a feminist would support such views.

    Sigmund Freud's amazing analysis of symbol transformation in dreams can be seen as borrowing from Marx's analysis of the transformation of commodities in Das Kapital.
    I think this is a forced interpretation. Thinkers of every tendency have long written about transformations. Joule or Sadi Carnot weren't influenced by Marx in their work about termodinamics, Darwin was not influenced by Marx in his work about evolution, etc. And I would say that Freud wasn't influenced by Marx in his analysis of dreams; he comes from other other path, and the compatibility or incompatibility, complementarity or contradiction, etc, between his views and Marx's will be discussed perhaps for centuries. Why should we fantasise a faux biography of Freud, in which he would be a militant leftist, and why would we grasp at straws to make that point ("gee, he was Jewish, so he must have voted for the left, and if he voted for the left, he was a leftist militant")? Why can't we accept that people who aren't political revolutionaries - who are centrists, apolitical, even outright reactionaries - can be great at other dimensions of human achievement?

    Could any of D.H. Lawrence's or James Joyce's great novels exploring the lives and thoughts of working class people have been written without the influence of Marx and the workingclass socialist movement he helped to organize? The debt of Eugene O'Neil and Arthur Miller to Marx is clear and obvious, even if their positions in society and capitalist censorship forced them to be circumspect in their conclusions.
    I wouldn't know if this is true or not. I would note, however, that Charles Dickens wrote impressive novels about the lives and thoughts of individuals of the working class, and it is difficult to read the Das Kapital, part one, without hearing echoes of Oliver Twist, and I am far from sure that there is more between Dickens and Marx than the fact that they lived roughly at the same time and place, and saw similar things and events. But this is a different issue; the working class itself, through its mere presence, and even more by its struggles, its mores, its sufferings and disasters, cannot have failed to impress writers and thinkers, even those who never read, or understood, or sympathised, with Marx and Marxism.

    It is a mistake to not recognize the influence of Marxist ideas in other fields because they do not follow the exact same format or structure as Marx did. Marx was also a product of his time. We have to see Wittgenstein the same way.
    It is also a mistake to fantasise the influence of Marx on whatever we appreciate.

    And I think our appreciation of Wittgenstein should stand on a proper reading of what he says. Projecting our own ideas into his writings doesn't do any good for us, or for him, or - if that's what we happen to be projecting into Wittgenstein - to Marxist thinking.

    Now, I can't claim to have a proper understanding of Wittgenstein's work; I am at the moment struggling with the Philosophic Investigations (and wondering how can people get so passionate about that kind of stuff). But what has been systematically presented to us as his thought has not bought any sympathy from my part - it is just a new fad of intellectual sectarianism and snobbery, of the same gender, though obviously not of the same species, that has long plagued the left (indeed, a particularly nasty and extreme species of such dogmatism, even compared to the abyssal standards of the left). The best I can say in Wittgenstein's behalf, regarding this, is that he is apparently innocent of such developments (and, indeed, that some things he writes in PhI seem to directly contradict some of the posturing here); the worse I can imagine is that his own presumption and arrogance may have added with those of the left to ignite Ms. Lichtenstein's own school of sectarian and dogmatic sophistry.

    Luís Henrique
  6. #66

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    And I would say that Freud wasn't influenced by Marx in his analysis of dreams; he comes from other other path, and the compatibility or incompatibility, complementarity or contradiction, etc, between his views and Marx's will be discussed perhaps for centuries. Why should we fantasise a faux biography of Freud,
    And I would say why don't you, ummm, read a fucking book or two instead of pulling this crap out of your ass?
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    And I would say why don't you, ummm, read a fucking book or two instead of pulling this crap out of your ass?
    I have read most of Freud, thanks. Why are you so intent in falsifying history?

    Luís Henrique
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    I think that a lot of Wittgenstein's attraction to communism came out of his Tolstoyism. But Wittgenstein at Cambridge was close to a number of Marxist or Marxisant academics there, including Pierro Sraffa, Christopher Hill, and Maurice Dobb, to name just a few. So I think it unlikely that he was completely clueless concerning Marxism.
  9. #69

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    I have read most of Freud, thanks. Luís Henrique
    All right, smartass.

    - Name those books and articles where Freud discusses Marxism, explicitly or implicitly.

    - Name the followers of Freud who were Marxists or Socialists; in which parts of Freud's correspondence is Freud's relationship with them discussed?

    - Name and describe the correspondence between Freud and his openly Marxist followers.

    Name major secondary literature in which Freud's politics is discussed.

    I'll be checking back in a few minutes. Everybody deserves a chance to prove he's not a pathological liar.
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    All right, smartass.

    - Name those books and articles where Freud discusses Marxism, explicitly or implicitly.
    None that I am aware of. In Totem und Taboo and in Civilisation and its Discontents, he advances hypotheses about society that are incompatible with Marx and Engels ideas, as expressed in the Grundrisse and in The Origin of the Family, Private Property, and the State.

    - Name the followers of Freud who were Marxists or Socialists; in which parts of Freud's correspondence is Freud's relationship with them discussed?
    Reich, Fromm, Marcuse. I don't know whether they discussed such subjects in correspondence. I have read Freud's published books, not his correspondence.

    - Name and describe the correspondence between Freud and his openly Marxist followers.
    What?

    Name major secondary literature in which Freud's politics is discussed.
    Oh good grief. There is plenty, I don't remember any on the top of my head. Freud's politics was never a secret. He voted for centrist parties, and avoided getting involved in politics any further than that. Do you have any evidence of it being otherwise?

    I'll be checking back in a few minutes. Everybody deserves a chance to prove he's not a pathological liar.
    Listen, you have made the rather weird point that Wittgenstein and Freud were socialist activists, which is widely known to be false. You have never brought any evidence to back up those absurd claims, except for the even more absurd idea that, being both Jewish, they must have voted for the left - which is a) utterly illogical, b) a mere undemonstrated hypothesis in the case of Wittgenstein, and manifestly false in the case of Freud, and c) completely different from an actual involvement with leftist politics. And I am the pathological liar?

    Do I smell here the Freudian mechanism of projection?

    Luís Henrique
    Last edited by Luís Henrique; 1st September 2011 at 16:08.
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    I think that a lot of Wittgenstein's attraction to communism came out of his Tolstoyism. But Wittgenstein at Cambridge was close to a number of Marxist or Marxisant academics there, including Pierro Sraffa, Christopher Hill, and Maurice Dobb, to name just a few. So I think it unlikely that he was completely clueless concerning Marxism.
    Mkay. Pick your PhI and open it at paragraphs 193-194, where he discusses the functioning of machines, or rather what we mean by "functioning of machines". Does that sound like it was written by someone with any knowledge of Marx's work? Namely, where does it sound as written by someone acquainted to Marx's discussion of the finalistic nature of human activity?

    Luís Henrique
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    None that I am aware of.
    FAIL.
    In Totem und Taboo and in Civilisation and its Discontents, he advances hypotheses about society that are incompatible with Marx and Engels ideas, as expressed in the Grundrisse and in The Origin of the Family, Private Property, and the State.
    FAIL.

    Reich, Fromm, Marcuse.
    Three (or rather, two) out of twenty plus members of the IPA? FAIL.
    I don't know whether they discussed such subjects in correspondence.
    FAIL.
    I have read Freud's published books, not his correspondence.
    FAIL.
    Oh good grief. There is plenty, I don't remember any on the top of my head.
    FAIL.
    He avoided getting involved in politics any further than that.
    FAIL (see 1927 letter of support for the Socialists).

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    Sure, not everything in life is the struggle for socialism. Which also means that we can perfectly like and understand things like Einstein's physics, Brahms' music, or Wittgenstein's philosophy, without the need of fantasising the supposed involvement of Einstein, Brahms, or Wittgenstein with leftist politics.

    Luís Henrique
    I have to say i think have some suspcion that your comments on this thread are in part motivated by your wish to express your dislike of wittgensteins philospohy on the sly.

    Likewise I think it is mistaken of you to make points like this, since it is clear to anyone who has an aquantiance with wittgenstein knows it is far less removed from the struggle for socialism, espcailly given that most socialist parties believe in dialectical materialism than einstein's physics are. thoughout all of this i get the sense you, as a supporter of diamat, are trying to make out wittgenstein has fuck all to do with socialism so you can dismiss any attempts to use his work to critise your own philospoy and its impact on socialism.
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    I have to say i think have some suspcion that your comments on this thread are in part motivated by your wish to express your dislike of wittgensteins philospohy on the sly.

    Likewise I think it is mistaken of you to make points like this, since it is clear to anyone who has an aquantiance with wittgenstein knows it is far less removed from the struggle for socialism, espcailly given that most socialist parties believe in dialectical materialism than einstein's physics are. thoughout all of this i get the sense you, as a supporter of diamat, are trying to make out wittgenstein has fuck all to do with socialism so you can dismiss any attempts to use his work to critise your own philospoy and its impact on socialism.
    Oh, so now I am a supporter of the Stalinist imbecility called "diamat"? From where do you take such absurd?

    Luís Henrique
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    OK - your turn: What are the articles by Freud where he implicitly or explicitly discusses Marxism?

    FAIL.
    So enlighten us: what does Freud discuss in Totem und Tabu and/or in Civilisation and its Discontents, and how does it relate to Marxism, socialism, or class struggle?

    Three (or rather, two) out of twenty plus members of the IPA? FAIL.
    Well, those are the thinkers whose work had an actual impact. Who are the others, and what is their importance for either Marxism or psychoanalisis?

    FAIL.
    So, what did Freud discuss concerning socialism, Marxism, or class struggle with his openly Marxist followers?

    FAIL.
    Never claimed to have read all of Freud. I said, most of it. And so it is: Civilisation and its Discontents, The Interpretation of Dreams, Beyond the Pleasure Principle, The Ego and the Id, Psychopathology of Cotidian Life, Totem und Tabu, Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality, Introduction to Psychoanalysis, Jokes and their Relation to the Unconscious, Hysteria, The Future of Religions, Psychology of Erotic Life, etc.

    FAIL.
    And so, what does the major secondary literature tell us about Freud's politics?

    FAIL (see 1927 letter of support for the Socialists).

    Ah, so in 1927 he supported the Socialist Socialdemocratic Party. Maybe. How does this make him a socialist activist? In times of despair, with his prefered centrist parties going bankrupt and electorally inviable, he supported the socialdemocrats (not the "socialists") against a worse evil - the extreme right represented by the fascist-leaning Christian Social Party and the National Socialists. Sorry, but that doesn't make anyone a socialist, or even a socialdemocrat.

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    Luís Henrique
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    Likewise I think it is mistaken of you to make points like this, since it is clear to anyone who has an aquantiance with wittgenstein knows it is far less removed from the struggle for socialism, espcailly given that most socialist parties believe in dialectical materialism than einstein's physics are.
    Well, on what do you base your assertion that "it is clear to anyone who has an aquantiance with wittgenstein knows it is far less removed from the struggle for socialism"? What facts do you have to back such idea? What did Wittgenstein actually do for the cause of socialism? Where he did even utter the word? When did he demonstrate having any notion of what class struggle is?

    thoughout all of this i get the sense you, as a supporter of diamat, are trying to make out wittgenstein has fuck all to do with socialism so you can dismiss any attempts to use his work to critise your own philospoy and its impact on socialism.
    You people have a bad habit of trying to read my mind. Where have I voiced support for "Diamat"? What is "my own philosophy"? Please, if you don't have anything reasonable to say, why don't you "pass in silence"?

    Luís Henrique
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    most socialist parties believe in dialectical materialism than einstein's physics
    And by the way, what is the evidence that Wittgenstein ever engaged in criticism of dialectical materialism, or of its Stalinist caricature?

    Luís Henrique
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    Sorry, I used the word "diamat" instead of dialetical materialism. I apologise, it wasn't intended to be a "slander" as you say, but just a mistake. You do believe in dialetical materialism, at least though, whatever you feel about the "stalinist cariature" (diamat.)

    I think you misssed the point of what i was saying before though. I never said wittgenstein was personally involved in much to do with socialism at all, and the best people can come up with is anacodatal or passing comments at best. What I said was that since wittgenstein's work clearly is relavant to the philospohies commonly held by socialists, like yourself, which influence their actions as socialists, he is not "irrelavant." just because he himself personally has only made passing comments about socialism at all. Surely you can see this is different to einsteins work?
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    Sorry, I used the word "diamat" instead of dialetical materialism. I apologise, it wasn't intended to be a "slander" as you say, but just a mistake. You do believe in dialetical materialism, at least though, whatever you feel about the "stalinist cariature" (diamat.)
    I don't remember using the word "slander" in this context. I of course accept your apologies, but if you made a mistake here, it was a gross mistake. Who has ever decreed that "diamat" is either materialist or dialectical (it is neither, if you ask me)? Stalin? Ms. Lichtenstein?

    I don't think dialectical materialism is something to be "believed"; it is a method, we either use it or not. Of course, I am a Marxist, so I use it; I wonder how one can be a Marxist without using it, and what method should a Marxist use, if not dialectical materialism.

    I think you misssed the point of what i was saying before though. I never said wittgenstein was personally involved in much to do with socialism at all, and the best people can come up with is anacodatal or passing comments at best.
    Yes, that is what is true; apparently it is not what is believed by some people here.

    What I said was that since wittgenstein's work clearly is relavant to the philospohies commonly held by socialists, like yourself, which influence their actions as socialists, he is not "irrelavant."
    But is it relevant? As far as I know, he never uttered any criticism, be it of Marxism, or of Stalinist "diamat". Indeed, people intend to prove that he was sympathetic to the left because he once planned to live in the Soviet Union - but, by such line of reasoning, this would "prove" he was "sympathetic" to "diamat" - which was the "official" "philosophy" in that place and time.

    What can be said is that his work implies such criticism. But his work is so convoluted and enigmatic, that practically anything can be thought as "implied" in it, from militant atheism to mystical, if unorthodox, theism. Apparently it is impossible to interpret Wittgenstein without misinterpreting him. So what are the implications to socialism or to dialectical materialism, if any? Maybe there are some - and - gasp - maybe there are none; what I can say for sure is, I don't take Ms. Lichtenstein very peculiar, very idiossincratic, and very biased, interpretation of Wittgenstein for granted. And, not taking it for granted, I don't think that Wittgenstein's method is necessarily opposed to Marx's method (a.k.a. "dialectical materialism"). Some much better arguments than Ms. Lichtenstein's sophisms would be needed to take me to that conclusion.

    just because he himself personally has only made passing comments about socialism at all. Surely you can see this is different to einsteins work?
    No, I don't see how this is different from Einstein's work from such point of view. It is of course different in that Einstein's work was science, not philosophy, and was solidly rooted in the scientific tradition of his time. He obviously knew his Newton very well; if Wittgenstein knew his Saussure, he certainly didn't make a point of making it clear in his work.

    Now, let's place the burden of proof where it belongs. Where did Wittgenstein criticise "dialectics", or Marx's method, or "diamat", or Lenin's "Empiriocriticism", etc.? What does he say that can be actually taken as contrary to any of those things? I am tired of "arguments" like "Lenin had to think about motion without matter in order to say it was unthinkable" - it is sheer sophistry, and anti-Wittgensteinian sophistry for what is worth, because anyone actually looking at how words are used can see that this is not how we use the word "unthinkable".

    So, no, the reason I am commenting on Wittgenstein and his "ordinary language philosophy" is not what you think it is:

    i get the sense you, as a supporter of diamat, are trying to make out wittgenstein has fuck all to do with socialism so you can dismiss any attempts to use his work to critise your own philospoy and its impact on socialism.
    Let's get real. The guy had fuck all to do with socialism (of course, someone else might try and build bridges between his thought and socialism, but that would be this someone else's work, not Wittgenstein's). And any attempts to use his work to criticise "my philosophy" - or whatever other philosophy, fwiw - should at least be actually based in his work, which "anti-dialectics" is not.

    Now, my "philosophy" - if a "philosophy" it is - is Marxism, and I would defend its "impact" on socialism. Wouldn't you?

    Luís Henrique

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