Brief account of Broad's philosophy. He identified with the style of analytic philosophy pioneered by Moore and Russell but was not influenced by Wittgenstein (except perhaps indirectly through Russell).
Russell's philosophy from 1912 to the mid 1920's was influenced by Wittgenstein in the following respects:
coversations with Wittgenstein and the typescript `Notes on Logic' (1913) resulted in Russell abandoning his Theory of Knowledge, and then assimilating many of Wittgenstein's ideas into The Philosophy of Logical Atomism [Rus56].
He accepted from Wittgenstein:
He disagreed on the following:
The claim that logical truths are tautological is incorrectly taken to be incompatible with the claim that they are about abstract or logical objects. This is connected with the criticism of Russell's advocacy of scientific methods, which is taken either to conflate philosophy with the natural sciences except perhaps to the extent that it is engaged in metaphysics. However, it is possible to hold that logic is tautologous, and that it is about abstract objects, and that it is incremental in the way that all science is (including mathematics). Russell was influenced by Wittgenstein to abandon positions which still seem to me very reasonable.
Apparently, in the development of Wittgenstein's ideas between the Tractatus and his later philosophy, a key element was the abandonment of the logical independence of atomic propositions. Logical dependencies between atomic propositions seems to have been given the tag ``determinate exclusion''. From the observation that there are such (and this is necessary if the semantics of any non-logical concepts are permitted to result in logical truths, e.g. if distinct colour attributions are to be incompatible) it is inferred (how is not explained by Hacker, and probably not by Wittgenstein either) that ``one cannot conjoin `A is 2 foot long' with `A is three foot long'''. There are of course other examples of Wittgenstein's regarding necessary falsehoods as senseless. The result of this is to make it appear that the Tractarian truth functional account of the logical connectives, and hence the whole Tractarian account of propositions, is irretreivably damaged. So far I am ignorant of any argument to support this which is stronger than dogmatic assertion.
The problems in the logical theory of the Tractatus lead Wittgenstein on to doubts about the metaphysical aspects.
a description of the world consists of statements of facts (viz: true statements), not an enumeration of things
pointing out a fact is simply making a true statement
With this the picture theory fell too, and the thesis of isomorphism between language and reality, and the idea of logical form, and from here, the ``Augustinian'' model of language.
Which seems to be something like the idea that language has a denotational semantics.
Now we have lost the basis for the kind of philosophical analysis envisaged in the Tractatus and the Cambridge style analysis to which it had contributed. `New level analysis' (reductive) was to be replaced by `same level analysis' (paraphrastic, connective).
``Philosophy, as Wittgenstein now conceived of it, consists in the dissolution of philosophical problems. All philosophy can do is to destroy idols (and that includes not creating new ones, such as `the absence of an idol'). One of the greatest impediments for philosophy is the expectation of new, deep, hitherto unheard of information or explanation. Philosophy produces no new knowledge, but only grammatical elucidations - reminders of how we use words - which unravel the knotted skein of our philosophical reflections.''
Oxford philosophy was moribund until the mid 1930s, when, after a generation gap created by the great war, a new generation of oxford philosophers began to stir under the stimulus of ideas, primarily from Cambridge and Vienna. Wittgenstein's impact was insignificant except upon Ryle and Ayer.
The link with Cambridge came first with Price who undertook some of his postgraduate studies in Cambridge and ``introduced the idea that young Oxford could and should learn from Cambridge''. Price brought back to Oxford a concern with sense datum theories of perception, which became a central Oxford preoccupation until it ``crumbled'' under the assault of G.A.Paul, Ryle, Wittgenstein and Austin.
The principal Oxford figures were Ryle, Ayer and Austin. Ryle had in his early papers an `Occamising zeal', in search of:
Of his early `occamising' papers the most influential was `Systematically Misleading Expressions' [Ryl32]. In this paper he took the view that statements unproblematic in ordinary discourse become misleading in a philosophical reflection, because their grammatical or syntactic form is improper to the states of affairs which they record. It is the task of philosophy to recast these more properly. There are four classes of these:
As the war approached Ryle moved away from this position with his 1938 paper `Categories', in which he argued that philosophical antinomies and puzzlements stem from failure to apprehend category differences between expressions. The concept of a category mistake was to be prominent in Ryle's post war philosophy.