Abstract. According to the received view, the Tractatus would present a realistic conception of the meaning of a declarative sentence: that meaning would be explained in terms of evidence-transcending, not epistemically-constrained, truth-conditions. In this paper, I make a case against such a contention. If states of affairs are identified with possible combinations of phenomenal objects, the truth-conditions of an elementary proposition inevitably collapse onto its assertability-conditions: the existence of the state of affairs depicted by the proposition would be both the condition for its being true and, at the same time, the condition for our recognition of its being true. Moreover, the finiteness of logical space (the set of all phenomenal states of affairs) would ensure the decidability, in principle, of all meaningful propositions, and hence would preserve the general validity of the laws of classical logic. Lastly, the problem of the relationship between the overt verificationism of Wittgenstein’s 1929–1933 writings and the Tractatus’s ontological and semantic views, is dealt with.

Ontology and Semantics: an Anti-Realistic Reading of the Tractatus

Pasquale Frascolla
2017

Abstract

Abstract. According to the received view, the Tractatus would present a realistic conception of the meaning of a declarative sentence: that meaning would be explained in terms of evidence-transcending, not epistemically-constrained, truth-conditions. In this paper, I make a case against such a contention. If states of affairs are identified with possible combinations of phenomenal objects, the truth-conditions of an elementary proposition inevitably collapse onto its assertability-conditions: the existence of the state of affairs depicted by the proposition would be both the condition for its being true and, at the same time, the condition for our recognition of its being true. Moreover, the finiteness of logical space (the set of all phenomenal states of affairs) would ensure the decidability, in principle, of all meaningful propositions, and hence would preserve the general validity of the laws of classical logic. Lastly, the problem of the relationship between the overt verificationism of Wittgenstein’s 1929–1933 writings and the Tractatus’s ontological and semantic views, is dealt with.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11563/132299
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