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Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology

Volume 22, Issue 3, 2018

Wittgenstein and Philosophy of Technology

Alfred Nordmann
Pages 334-351
DOI: 10.5840/techne201812387

A Feeling for the Work as a Limited Whole
Wittgenstein on the Problems of Philosophy and the Problem of Technology

This is a paper, on the face of it, about Wittgenstein’s Tractatus and its contribution to the philosophy of technology. As such, it advances a three-fold claim: Especially the early Wittgenstein was not a philosopher of technology. Though he does not recognize philosophical problems of technology—for example, of engineering knowledge—he is keenly aware of the limits of philosophy. Thus, he inadvertently opens up a perspective for the philosophy of technology, after all. By drawing out the implications of this perspective for a conception of ‘working knowledge’ and thus of working orders of things, this paper ends up promoting a research program for the philosophy of technology.