How Not to Read Philosophical Investigations: Brandom’s Wittgenstein

John McDowell
University of Pittsburgh, United States of America |

Received: 3-January-2018 | Accepted: 5-April-2018 | Published: 30-June-2019
Disputatio [Jun. 2019], Vol. 8, No. 9, pp. 00-00 | DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.2653928
Article | [EN] | Full Text | Statistics | Copyright Notice [es] | Vol. 8 No. 9

How to cite this article:

McDowell, John (2018). «How Not to Read Philosophical Investigations: Brandom’s Wittgenstein». Disputatio. Philosophical Research Bulletin 8, no. 9: pp. 00–00.

Abstract | This paper, originating from a Wittgenstein conference in Delphi, Greece in June 2001, questions Brandom’s reading of Wittgenstein on “Following a Rule”. For the purpose of our current investigative dispute, it is a very good starting point to draw our attention to some of the vital differences between Wittgenstein’s and Brandom’s approach to the relation between practice and rules that may not be quite as clear at first sight from Brandom’s own writings. This writing maintains that Brandom misconstrues Wittgenstein’s remarks about signposts and Philosophical Investigations §201 with the consequence that his own explications about tacit rules involved in practice seem more Wittgensteinian than they really are. For one, Brandom duplicates Wittgenstein’s requirement of correctness in rule following: “…correctness that consists in following a rule [does not presuppose] correctness that does not.” On the other hand Brandom’s reading makes Wittgenstein’s quietism look like ”a pretext for not doing constructive work”, while Wittgenstein’s point is that there is nothing left to enquire.
Keywords |
Regulism · Rule-Following · Making Explicit · Practice.

Cómo no leer las Investigaciones Filosóficas: El Wittgenstein de Brandom

Resumen | Este trabajo, originalmente una conferencia sobre Wittgenstein en Junio de 2001 en Delfos, Grecia, cuestiona la lectura que Brandom hace de Wittgenstein sobre “seguir una regla”. Merece la pena llamar la atención sobre algunas de las diferencias vitales entre los planteamientos de Wittgenstein y los de Brandom acerca de la relación entre la práctica y las reglas, que posiblemente no estén tan claras a primera vista a partir de la misma obra de Brandom. Se afirma en este ensayo que Brandom malinterpreta los comentarios de Wittgenstein sobre las señales de camino y el parágrafo 201 de Investigaciones Filosóficas con la consecuencia de que sus propias explicaciones sobre las reglas tácitas presentes en la práctica dan la apariencia de ser más wittgensteinianas de lo que realmente son. Brandom duplica, por una parte, el requerimiento de corrección de Wittgenstein en seguir una regla: «…la corrección que consiste en seguir una regla [no presupone] una corrección que no consista en ello.» Por otra parte la lectura de Brandom provoca que el quietismo de Wittgenstein dé la impresión de ser «un pretexto para no hacer trabajo constructivo», mientras que el punto de Wittgenstein es que no queda nada más por indagar.
Palabras Clave | Regulismo · Seguir una regla · Hacer explícito · Práctica.


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Wittgenstein, Ludwig (1958). The Blue and Brown Books [BB]. Oxford: Basil Blackwell. The translation into Spanish of quotes from this book is based on the German original in: Wittgenstein (1984). Das Blaue Buch. Werkausgabe Band 5. Frankfurt: Suhrkamp.

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