UBC Philosophy: 2022W Student-Directed Seminar

UBC’s Student-Directed Seminar (SDS) program “provides upper year undergraduate students (in 3rd year or later) the opportunity to propose, coordinate, and lead their own 3-credit seminar class with a small group of peers on a topic not currently offered at UBC-Vancouver.”

In 2022W term 2, UBC Philosophy’s honours student, Luc Angelini, led a successful seminar examining the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus by Ludwig Wittgenstein.  Here are the details:

PHIL 487 004: Wittgenstein’s Tractatus

Student Coordinator: Luc Angelini (he/him)

Faculty Sponsor: Anders Kraal (Philosophy)

This seminar is scheduled for Tuesdays and Thursdays from 12:30 pm to 2:00 pm. You can view this seminar on the SSC Course Schedule.

In this course we study the major text from Ludwig Wittgenstein, the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus and surrounding interpretations/critiques of it. This text was one of Wittgenstein’s only publications, and he later recanted elements of it in Philosophical Investigations (1945).

This course is highly flexible, but in order to understand the text and to provide insight on it, students will do their own research into secondary sources which critique or interpret Wittgenstein’s work. Importantly, we will consider how Wittgenstein’s own thoughts on interpretation and critique impacts our assessments, especially since he often thought his work to be misinterpreted.

We will survey many interpretive works surrounding the Tractatus such as James Klagge’s Tractatus in Context. The goal is to understand what philosophical climate Wittgenstein was doing his work in, how he contributed and changed it, and what he actually meant.