Title: WITTGENSTEIN VERSUS THE PLATONISM OF SIGNIFICANCE: THE ANTHROPOLOGICAL TURNING POINT TOWARDS A PHILOSOPHY OF PRAXIS
Abstract: This paper is intended to elicit Wittgenstein’s position regarding platonism reformulated into 1 – the analytical investigation of the conditions for a meaningful language, and 2 the deepening of a problem generated by the illusory conception that it is possible to capture the ultimate atomic elements of the meaning of a linguistic complex. That’s the way one can indeed understand that Wittgenstein has presented a critique of the tradition of ontology. The fact that he endorsed a « quasi-realism » approach to « objects » (Br. McGuinness) contrasts with the future Vienna Circle at a time the latter was still under the spell of the Tractatus Logico-philosophicus, close to a Russellian kind of logical atomism. It is not surprising that later on, Wittgenstein’s own « platonism » in its Fregean version became a target in the anthropological framework of a broader self-criticism for the belief in referential entities, or « objectual fetichism » (in A. Gargani’s terms). This anthropological turn nonetheless did not conquer the harder epistemological public of readers looking for logical truth. Yet, it presents some interesting features articulated to a « philosophy of praxis » that make « forms of life » the core of a possible critical grammar adjusted to a political engagement. Such an articulation that has been so much put into question among a number of theoreticians of social theory in Frankfurt and even later in France (e.g. Alain Badiou’s critique of Wittgenstein), seems to be on the contrary the opening of a new and fruitful way to consider contradictions between Frankfurt and Vienna in connection with social praxis.
in Journal of Philosophy