Outside

(This is tentative.)

The reason we feel threatened with suffocation when reading the Philosophical Investigations is that it seems to point to no “outside”. The Tractatus seemed to have an outside.
Even the fly in the fly-bottle – if he knows he is in the bottle – has an outside, and an outside can be both an object of hope or one of despair.
Hence, perhaps, the “lack of hope” one can feel: it comes from the reader’s metaphysical intuition that change is something coming from the outside to the inside: if there is no outside, no change is possible.
Perhaps – once we are outside the fly-bottle, or imagining ourselves to be – we only feel trapped because we mistake “having no outside” for “our outside being somewhere we can’t get to”.

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One Response to “Outside”

  1. Gideon Dresdner Says:

    Perhaps these are essentially private notes that play into your other schemes, but as is, it does not make much sense. Aside from the fact that I don’t really understand what you mean by outside and inside, the prospect of telling us readers about our feeling of suffocation when reading a text, is suffocating (sorry for the pun).
    If by outside and inside you mean to describe the things that Wittgenstein does and does not set out to talk about, then you actually have it backwards. If you read the Tractatus you will find that he is actually trying to talk about everything, i.e. the world. In fact, this follows from a premise of the Tractatus that there is a correspondance between language and the world (by understanding language, one understands the world and vice versa). But in the Investigations his only goal is to understand language, and to view the “world” as another word in language. If you could give me a compare/contrast with outside/inside, i.e. some examples, this would help illuminate what you are talking about, and I would be interested to hear it.

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