Wittgenstein's Philosophy of Psychology: Methodological Reflections

P. M. S. Hacker

in Wittgenstein and the Philosophy of Mind

Published in print September 2012 | ISBN: 9780199737666
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780199933372 | DOI:
Wittgenstein's Philosophy of Psychology: Methodological Reflections

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This chapter provides a lucid organization and examination of the main themes in Wittgenstein’s philosophy of psychology (mostly post-Investigations). This chapter is a study in Wittgenstein’s philosophical method, and shows how Wittgenstein is concerned to make surveyable the enormous landscape of the grammar of psychological concepts. As the chapter brings to light, in this period Wittgenstein is trying out a variety of different methodological tools, and his approach is far from settled or homogeneous, except for its commitment to describing the landscape without “falsifying it,” which involves eschewing philosophical theory (especially of the sort that apes scientific theory). Wittgenstein himself is explicit at times that he is not sure whether what he is doing will lead to an effective and efficient way of taming the complicated and misleading landscape he wishes to survey. Yet, if this chapter is correct, Wittgenstein’s self-critical and painstaking efforts did in fact generate a formidable bulwark against many of the programs driving philosophy of mind today, including the search for a cognitive science of the mind.

Keywords: Wittgenstein; philosophy of psychology; method; grammar of psychological concepts; cognitive science; post-Investigations

Chapter.  10706 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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