'IMAGINE A LANGUAGE-GAME...', OR ON THE BENEFITS OF IMAGINATION IN ANTHROPOLOGY OF THE WORD
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The essay attempts to apply the concept of 'the anthropological imagination', as understood by Andrzej Mencwel in his book so titled, in reconstructing the dynamics of the Ludwig Wittgenstein's thought, especially the forming of his 'late' philosophy. This development that took the shape of 'rite de passage' was affected mainly by his 'anthropological initiation' that had its source in the experiences gathered by him after abandonment of academic activities in favor of the 'simple' life. It was this initiation that offered him insight into the cultural dimension of linguistic phenomena, revealing countless situations in which language is used and perceived quite differently than as a means for 'conveying thoughts'; that was why he recognized the necessity to introduce the anthropological perspective into philosophy. In consequence, Wittgenstein undertook an analysis of various 'language-games', which produced the premises for his critique of the concept of language as 'autonomous discourse'. In developing that kind of investigation, he made use of the anthropological imagination, understood principally as an instrument of intellectual cognition. This strategy, based on the sui generis 'logic of culture', made it possible for him to transcend the well-established cognitive standards and to elaborate the open research approach to the cultural diversification of the human world, especially of language. Viewed in this way, Wittgenstein's thought laid the ground for 'anthropology of the word', the contemporary research perspective aiming to investigate language as a cultural phenomenon.
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