Rule-Following and Explanation Transcendence

Cyrus Panjvani

Abstract



The primary object of this paper is to draw out Wittgenstein's thought that
understanding of a rule does not transcend the explanations that can be given of it.
I call this Wittgensteinian thought an "anti-realist premise". There is a skeptical
argument, common to readings of Wittgenstein's rule following remarks as an
anti-realist argument, that is read to contain this thought as a premise. A further
skeptical argument, drawing on private language considerations as they apply to rule
following, interestingly serves as support for this premise. It is argued in closing
that, despite initial appearances to the contrary, this does not make Wittgenstein's
primary skeptical argument in the rule following remarks, anti-realist as it may be,
circular.

Keywords


philosophy; 20th century philosophy; Wittgenstein Ludwig; rule-following; mind; explanation transcendence; private language

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