Understanding Wittgenstein: Studies of Philosophical Investigations

By J. F. M. Hunter | Go to book overview

Twenty-Three
SUBTRACTING THE FACT THAT ONE'S ARM GOES UP

621. Let us not forget this: when 'I raise my arm', my arm goes up. And the problem arises: what is left over when I subtract the fact that my arm goes up from the fact that I raise my arm?

((Are the kinaesthetic sensations my willing ?))

THE ABOVE quotation is a much-pondered passage from the Philosophical Investigations. The sentence in double parentheses suggests that Wittgenstein thought that when we raise an arm, we will it to go up. In the surrounding sections he said nothing that clearly indicated the contrary, although it would not be surprising to find that he did not himself make this assumption, but was portraying one of the ways our deliberations may run if we do make it. He did, in RPP 1.51, say: 'How is "will" actually used? In philosophy one is unaware of having invented a quite new use of the word'. Do we, in the normal case of doing something, will to do it? Do we even know what this means?

In general, and excluding technical terms, we understand a word when it has an ordinary use with which we are familiar, and its current use is one of its ordinary uses; but 'to will' has no perfectly ordinary use. There are noun forms of 'will', as in the expression 'against my will', 'will power', and 'last will and testament', but it has an ordinary use as a verb only when we talk of willing another person to turn left, or of willing a stone to move. Although we are sometimes asked to do those things, and sometimes do something in response to such requests (like picturing the stone moving and grunting as with effort at the same time) -- we have no idea whether we are doing the right thing, or whether there is a right thing for these purposes. Moreover even if there were something to be

-198-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Understanding Wittgenstein: Studies of Philosophical Investigations
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 248

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.