…would we understand what he has to say? We could not, says Wittgenstein, to take liberties with one of his most (in)famous Witt-icisms. The question, however, might more rightly be put: if Wittgenstein could Tweet…? Well, now, we have the possibility of finding out. Yes, that’s right. Wittgenstein has opened a Twitter account.
OK, so that may not be wholly true (tweeting from beyond the grave isn’t the done thing just yet, even this close to halloween). But nevertheless, a new account has recently sprung to life, providing updates as if from the mouth of Wittgenstein. The project is being run and maintained by Zeph Auerbach, who aims to tell the life story of the famous philosopher in around 600 tweets, over the next six months. The information is based on Ray Monk’s 1990 biography, give or take a little creative licence, and spans the entire life of Wittgenstein, taking in two world wars, a smattering of philosophy, and maybe even that incident with the poker.
This all raises questions about how philosophers choose to communicate with the world. Do you know of many current philosophers who have chosen to embrace Twitter as a vehicle for communication of their ideas? Which other famous philosophers – living or dead – would you like to see tweeting on a daily basis? (C’mon folks, how good would ‘Nietzsche-tweets’ be?)