Seminar Series in Analytic Philosophy

Raimundo Henriques

LANCOG University of Lisbon

Ornament and Nonsense

6 April 2018, 16:00

Faculdade de Letras de Lisboa

Sala Mattos Romão (Departamento de Filosofia)

Abstract: In 1932 Wittgenstein stated that the use of nonsense in philosophy is “in a sense really a requirement of style” and hence similar to the use of ornamentation. The aim of this talk is to clarify the nature of this analogy by appeal to Adolf Loos’s thought, the influence of which Wittgenstein recognized in the same remark. I will argue that the best way to account for Wittgenstein’s suggestion is by taking the ‘sense-nonsense’ and ‘structure-ornament’ distinctions, not as theoretical ends accompanied by (a sort of) Ockham’s razor, but rather as theoretical means to a normative end.