•  298
  •  49
    Aesthetic Aspects of Persons in Kant, Schiller, and Wittgenstein
    The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy 9 35-39. 2006.
    The main ideas in this paper can be summarized in the following three points. (1) Openness, indeterminacy, and exemplarity are elements of both Kant's aesthetics and Wittgenstein's notion of language games. (2) These elements are essential to what makes a person. They are necessary in processes of decision-making and in the development of a person. (3) Such aspects were in the center of discussion during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries in Europe, especially in the tradition of the so-cal…Read more
  •  259
    On Wittgenstein on Certainty
    Contributions of the Austrian Ludwig Wittgenstein Society 19 320-322. 2011.
    In the preface to On Certainty Anscombe and von Wright say that in 1949 Malcolm suggested to Wittgenstein to think again about Moore’s “Defense of Common Sense” (1925) and “Proof of an External World” (1939). Malcolm himself had written on the issue in “Defending Common Sense” (1949). In the preface to the Philosophical Investigations Wittgenstein quotes Nestroy saying that there is usually very little progress in philosophy. But I think some progress has been made from Moore and Malcolm to Witt…Read more
  •  43
    Chinese Gestures, Forms of Life, and Relativism
    Contributions of the Austrian Ludwig Wittgenstein Society 23 331-333. 2015.
    In this essay I focus on Wittgenstein's discussion of how we understand and feel about people that come from cultures very different from our own. Wittgenstein writes about "guessing thoughts", "regularities", and "common human behaviour" (gemeinsame menschliche Handlungsweise) in this context. I argue that his idea about given forms of life that we should "accept", will be problematic if we want to find a meaningful way of relating to such people with whom we "cannot find our feet" (in die man …Read more
  •  105
    Wittgenstein in his later years thought about experiences of meaning and aspect change. Do such experiences matter? Or would a meaning- or aspect-blind person not lose much? Moreover, is this a matter of aesthetics or epistemology? To get a better perspective on these matters, I will introduce distinctions between certain subjective and objective aspects, namely feelings of our inner psychological states versus fine-tuned objective experiences of the outer world. It seems to me that in his discu…Read more
  •  2
    In der Reihe werden herausragende monographische Untersuchungen und Sammelbände zu allen Aspekten der Philosophie Kants veröffentlicht, ebenso zum systematischen Verhältnis seiner Philosophie zu anderen philosophischen Ansätzen in Geschichte und Gegenwart. Veröffentlicht werden Studien, die einen innovativen Charakter haben und ausdrückliche Desiderate der Forschung erfüllen. Die Publikationen repräsentieren den aktuellsten Stand der Forschung.
  •  241
    Where after all are the Meanings? A Defense of Internalism. Searle versus Putnam
    Experience and Analysis. Papers of the 27th International Wittgenstein Symposium 12 408-409. 2004.
    There has been recent dispute between Putnam and Searle over whether meanings are “in the head”. Putnam makes use of Twin-Earth thought experiments to show that our mental states alone cannot determine what we refer to (and thus “mean”) and that we rely also on external factors, which are not “in the head”. This suggests to me that we in some way mean more than we actually know. Searle on the other hand makes use of what he calls “Intentional contents”, “conditions of satisfaction”, and “self-re…Read more
  •  303
    Ethics and Relativism in Wittgenstein
    Contributions of the Austrian Ludwig Wittgenstein Society 20 348-350. 2012.
    This essay is about Wittgenstein, first about his views on ethics, second about his conception of language games. Third, it combines the two and shows how problems arise from this. Wittgenstein rejects theories of ethics and emphasises the variety of language games. Such language games are marked by what I call “inner relativity”. Wittgenstein himself was not a relativist, but it seems to me his views easily lead to what I call “outer relativism”. In matters of ethics this is particularly proble…Read more
  •  64
    Ob die Kategorien schon bei der Wahrnehmung eine Rolle spielen, wird von Kant-Interpreten unterschiedlich gesehen. Peter Rohs etwa argumentiert für eine Unabhängigkeit und Selbständigkeit der Wahrnehmung gegenüber dem Verstand. Die intuitive Synthesis der Einbildungskraft müsse auf eigenen Füßen stehen können und Bilder und „singuläre Sinne“ der Anwendung der Begriffe vorausgehen. McDowell hingegen spricht sich gegen eine solche Selbständigkeit der Wahrnehmung aus. Setzte man sie voraus, käme de…Read more
  •  365
    In the framework of his transcendental philosophy, Kant strictly separates morality from aesthetics. The pleasure in the good and the pleasure in the beautiful are two different kinds of pleasure (Arten des Wohlgefallens). As a consequence, a moral act as such cannot be beautiful. It is only in a second step that Kant indicates possible connections, in his comments on aesthetic ideas, symbolism, the sensus communis, and education in general. In Confucius on the other hand we do not find such a r…Read more
  •  216
    Kant's aesthetics: Overview and recent literature
    Philosophy Compass 4 (3): 380-406. 2009.
    In 1764, Kant published his Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and the Sublime and in 1790 his influential third Critique , the Critique of the Power of Judgment . The latter contains two parts, the 'Critique of the Aesthetic Power of Judgment' and the 'Critique of the Teleological Power of Judgment'. They reveal a new principle, namely the a priori principle of purposiveness ( Zweckmäßigkeit ) of our power of judgment, and thereby offer new a priori grounds for beauty and biology with…Read more
  •  6
    Chinese Perspectives on Free Will
    with Marchal Kai
    In Kevin Timpe, Meghan Griffith & Neil Levy (eds.), Routledge Companion to Free Will., Routledge. pp. 374-388. 2017.
    The problem of free will as it is know in Western philosophical traditions is hardly known in China. Considering how central the problem is in the West, this is a remarkable fact. We try to explain this, and we offer insights into discussions within Chinese traditions that we think are related, not historically but regarding the issues discussed. Thus we introduce four central Chinese concepts, namely: (1) xīn 心 (heart, heart-mind), (2) xìng 性 (human nature, characteristic tendencies, inborn cap…Read more
  •  122
    How Pictorial is Chinese? And Does it Matter?
    Contributions of the Austrian Ludwig Wittgenstein Society 18 317-319. 2010.
    It has often been said that the Chinese script is pictorial or ideographic, and that this is one of the reasons why Chinese tend to think more analogically than logically, and why in the past the natural sciences developed to a lesser degree in China than in the West. These are strong claims. They have often been oversimplified and exaggerated, but I think there is something to be said for them. Here I will focus on the first question. I will argue that Chinese characters still have semantic fea…Read more
  •  207
    Aesthetics and Rule Following
    Contributions of the Austrian Ludwig Wittgenstein Society 24 260-262. 2016.
    In this essay I point out parallels between Kant’s theory of aesthetics and Wittgenstein’s discussion of rule following. Although Wittgenstein did not write an aesthetics and Kant did not discuss Wittgensteinian rule-following problems, and although both Kant and Wittgenstein begin at very different starting points and use different methods, they end up dealing with similar issues, namely issues about rules, particularity, exemplarity, objectivity, practice, and as-if statements.
  •  128
    Knowledge, Belief, and the A Priori
    Contributions of the Austrian Ludwig Wittgenstein Society 11 369-370. 2003.
    This paper has two parts. In the first I give a brief historical account of the a priori and point out the central and problematic role of 'Erfahrung überhaupt' in Kant’s transcendental philosophy. In the second and main part I offer a criticism of Kripke’s arguments for the contingent a priori and I thereby question his radical separation of metaphysics and epistemology.