Tractatus 2.02, 2.0201, 2.021, 2.0211, 2.0212

2.02 The object is simple
2.0201 Every statement about complexes can be analysed into a statement about their constituent parts, and into those propositions which completely describe the complexes.
2.021 Objects form the substance of the world. Therefore they cannot be compound.
2.0211 If the world had no substance, then whether a proposition had sense would depend on whether another proposition was true.
2.0212 It would then be impossible to form a picture of the world (true or false).

The first three remarks seem straightforward to me (as much as anything can be straight forward in the Tractatus). Objects are atomic, they have no parts. What objects are is still mysterious. I will let Wittgenstein do his work with objects, as I feel i will wrap myself up in knots if I try to unravel the concept (as odd as that sounds). Objects form the substance of the world. This is not a metaphysical statement (keep repeating the mantra). Is it like this: objects form the logical substance of the world? This is the only way we can speak about the world, because the world contains objects of logical importance?

I’m not sure about this. Especially with the fourth remark here. This remark has plagued me. It is completely opaque to my understanding. If objects make up atomic facts, how could there be propositions at all without substance (objects). in remark 2.01 we learn that an atomic fact is a combination of objects. Given this, without objects there would be no atomic facts. IF there are no atomic facts, how could there be propositions? The harder question: how could their sense depend on other propositions at all? perhaps I’m missing a distinction between atomic facts and propositions. How are we to understand propositions in the Tractatus? How are propositions and atomic facts related? What true propositions would there be without substance? Or is that just the point, that there are no true propositions without substance?

The last remark seems to confirm my suspicions about objects and propositions. We could say nothing true nor false about the world without objects. What the world would be without objects, I don’t know. As I journey down the rabbit hole that is this work again, I am left with many such questions still.

~ by Barky on April 18, 2012.

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