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Lecture on Ethics

ISBN: 978-1-118-88713-4
152 pages
June 2014, Wiley-Blackwell
Lecture on Ethics (1118887131) cover image


The most complete edition yet published of Wittgenstein’s 1929 lecture includes a never-before published first draft and makes fresh claims for its significance in Wittgenstein’s oeuvre.

  • The first available print publication of all known drafts of Wittgenstein’s Lecture on Ethics
  • Includes a previously unrecognized first draft of the lecture and new transcriptions of all drafts
  • Transcriptions preserve the philosopher’s emendations thus showing the development of the ideas in the lecture
  • Proposes a different draft as the version read by Wittgenstein in his 1929 lecture
  • Includes introductory essays on the origins of the material and on its meaning, content, and importance
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii

1 Introduction: The Content of a Lecture on Ethics 1

2 Established Text of the Lecture: MS 139b Normalized 42

3 The Manuscripts of a Lecture on Ethics 52

4 Description of the Manuscripts 66

5 Symbols Used in the Diplomatic Transcriptions 69

6 Proto-Draft: Diplomatic Transcription 71

7 MS 139a: Diplomatic Transcription 77

8 MS 139b: Diplomatic Transcription 101

9 TS 207: Diplomatic Transcription 123

References 135

Index 137

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Author Information

Edoardo Zamuner is a postdoctoral fellow in the Philosophy Department of the University of Hong Kong. He has conducted research at University College London and the universities of Bologna and Melbourne. He has been a visiting researcher in the Wittgenstein Archives of the University of Bergen. Zamuner co-edited Wittgenstein’s Enduring Arguments (2009) with David Levy.

Ermelinda Valentina Di Lascio is a Mairie de Paris Research Fellow at the Léon Robin Centre for the Study of Ancient Thought at the University of Paris-Sorbonne, France. She has published work on Wittgenstein, Aristotle’s Sophistical Refutations, and on ancient philosophical texts written on papyri. She is a former Leverhulme Early Career Fellow and Scholar of St John’s College, Cambridge.

D.K. Levy is a teaching fellow in the School of Philosophy, Psychology, and Language Sciences at the University of Edinburgh, UK, where he lectures on moral philosophy and the history of philosophy. His research explores the nature of understanding, especially moral understanding. Dr Levy has published papers on moral philosophy, Wittgenstein and cognitive psychology.

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