Wittgenstein: Physics and Philosophy

Eduardo Simões


The purpose of this article is to fill an interpretive gap in L. Wittgenstein’s Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus in what has been overlooked by most scholars of the Austrian philosopher. It is the consideration of the possible influences that he would have suffered from the time of Mechanical Engineering studies and that reflected directly in his philosophy, especially those arising from the field of Physics. Due to the extensive restrictions that involve a scientific article, it will not be possible to present here what we believe to be the influences of L. Boltzmann’s thought on the Wittgenstein Tractatus – which will remain for future work. However, we present the influences of H. Hertz’s The Principles of Mechanics on at least three fundamental themes of Wittgenstein’s Tractatus: on the ontological formalism of Tractarian objects, on the picture theory of language and on the conception of science of that work. It is expected that such clarifications will serve a new and important understanding of this seminal work of the 20th century, this time from the perspective of the relationship between Philosophy and Physics in Wittgenstein.


Wittgenstein; Tractatus; Hertz; mechanics; representation

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.24117/2526-2270.2020.i8.08


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ISSN: 2526-2270

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