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Ludwig Wittgenstein: The Duty of Genius


Ludwig Wittgenstein is perhaps the greatest philosopher of the twentieth century, and certainly one of the most original in the entire Western tradition. Given the inaccessibility of his work, it is remarkable that he has inspired poems, paintings, films, musical compositions, titles of books -- and even novels.

In his splendid biography, Ray Monk has made this very compelling human being come alive in a way that perfectly explains the fascination he has evoked. Wittgenstein's life was one of great moral and spiritual depth. Although his work addresses problems of logic, language, mind, and knowledge, he often described it as having an ethical point, and once said that he "could not help seeing every problem from a religious point of view." In successfully bridging the gap assumed by many to exist between Wittgenstein's life and his work, Monk's biography helps to explain the interest in Wittgenstein's later philosophy on the part of Buddhist scholars.


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