Nordic Wittgenstein Review 5 (2):91-124 (2016)

Tim Kraft
Universität Regensburg
One of the unconventional features of Wittgenstein’s _Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus_ is its use of an elaborated and detailed numbering system. Recently, Bazzocchi, Hacker und Kuusela have argued that the numbering system means that the _Tractatus_ must be read and interpreted not as a sequentially ordered book, but as a text with a two-dimensional, tree-like structure. Apart from being able to explain how the _Tractatus_ was composed, the tree reading allegedly solves exegetical issues both on the local and the global level. This paper defends the sequential reading against the tree reading. After presenting the challenges generated by the numbering system and the two accounts as attempts to solve them, it is argued that Wittgenstein’s own explanation of the numbering system, anaphoric references within the _Tractatus_ and the exegetical issues mentioned above do not favour the tree reading, but a version of the sequential reading. This reading maintains that the remarks of the _Tractatus_ form a sequential chain: The role of the numbers is to indicate how remarks on different levels are interconnected to form a concise, surveyable and unified whole.
Keywords chain reading  eye analogy  numbering system  sequential reading  tree reading  resolute reading  Wittgenstein Ludwig  Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus
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References found in this work BETA

Tractatus logico-philosophicus.Ludwig Wittgenstein - 1922 - Filosoficky Casopis 52:336-341.
Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus.Ludwig Wittgenstein - 1956 - Revista Portuguesa de Filosofia 12 (1):109-110.
A Companion to Wittgenstein’s Tractatus.Max Black - 1964 - Foundations of Language 5 (2):289-296.
Was He Trying to Whistle It?Peter Ms Hacker - 2000 - In Alice Crary & Rupert J. Read (eds.), The New Wittgenstein. Routledge. pp. 353-388.

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The University of Iowa Tractatus Map.David G. Stern - 2016 - Nordic Wittgenstein Review 5 (2):203-220.

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