Ramsey and Wittgenstein in Prospect

I’ve posted links to the two papers below, more than once before in various contexts, but I wanted to capture a couple of meta-thoughts when I ran across them again today.

[Given the general state of link-rot on the web beyond a decade, or less in many cases, it is fascinating that an article from 1999 in Prospect Magazine remains accessible (un-archived) in 2019 – (touch wood – wouldn’t want to tempt fate – I’ve just taken offline copies). Pre-dates even this blog.]

“Wittgenstein’s Master – The genius who died at 26”
by AC Grayling in Prospect Magazine, January 23, 2013.
A review of “Frank Ramsey: A Sister’s Memoir” by Margaret Paul (his younger sister). [Me – Ramsey was one of the few people that “got” Wittgenstein and significantly influenced him and his work.]

“Wittgenstein’s Forgotten Lesson”
by Ray Monk in Prospect Magazine, July 20, 1999.
Wittgenstein’s philosophy is at odds with the scientism which dominates our times. Ray Monk explains why his thought is still relevant. [Me – This is probably where I originally got the word “scientism” for the ills of modern rationalism.]

Additionally, as well as the meta-point about Prospect Magazine, there is the intriguing suggestion that Ramsey was the inspiration for Ramsay in Virginia Woolf’s “To The Lighthouse” – which I read on a recommendation but was initially underwhelmed. May need to revisit?

And – afterthoughts – whilst I’m here:

“Richard Rorty by Simon Blackburn” in Prospect Magazine, April 20, 2003
“He is arguably the most influential philosopher of our time: a radical American who is against war in Iraq – and against truth, reason and science. Yet his radicalism turns out to be oddly disarming.” [Me – just reminded myself recently how important Contingency, Irony & Solidarity was and how I had already been influenced with many annotations in my copy.]

“Kurt Gödel and the Romance of Logic”
Also by Ray Monk in Prospect Magazine, December 13, 2018
The great theory of this emaciated genius of philosophy defeated the finest minds of the 20th century—and rescued the idea that there are truths that humans can never prove. [Me – I’d forgotten this one crossed my path on Twitter last year and not sure I captured it. “Romance” so important here – must link with Rebecca Goldstein on Gödel, and Ray is one of few links between Wittgenstein and Gödel.]

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