Volume 7, 2007
Philosophy of Culture(s)
Wittgenstein and Spengler vis-à-vis Frazer
Perspicuous representation, Wittgenstein offers, is not another methodology, but it consists in seeing the connections. The Wittgensteinian perspicuous representation is therapeutic. The method he suggests for philosophy is the same method he suggests for social sciences. In both of these cases, he tries to get us to see the confusions we become entangled in when philosophizing and theorizing. In both of these disciplines he warns us not to advance explanatory, metaphysical theories. In this paper, I connect Wittgenstein's this concern with his critique of Frazer. In criticizing Frazer Wittgenstein adopts the important part of Spengler's view. Nonetheless, there are differences between the views of Wittgenstein and those of Spengler; this paper aims to show similarities as well as these differences. The first part of the paper briefly summarizes Frazer's views. The second part focusses on Wittgenstein's critique of Frazer regarding science. The third part gives an account of his critique concerning method of social sciences and philosophy. The last part concentrates on Wittgenstein's critique of Frazer regarding the tolerance towards alternative forms of life.