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The goal of this project is to dramatize philosophical thought conveyed in Ludwig Wittgenstein’s Tractatus Logico–Philosophicus through the lens of his later idea of the "language game." Wittgenstein is wrangling with the connection between reality and language (or lack thereof), the irony being that he uses language to discuss language, thus limiting himself in using but this one form. This project acknowledges the various forms language can take, primarily through physicality. In Philosophical Investigations, Wittgenstein suggests that it is through the establishment of rules that one constructs a language. It is then through the enactment of said rules that one speaks said language. In this way, the Tractatus can be played out as a linguistic game. The playfulness of structure extracted from the Tractatus dictates the theory of our performance. This piece attempts to create a system of visually dramatized representations of the linguistic propositions put forth in the Tractatus in order to ground this ungroundable text.
This piece was originally funded by the DURF Research Grant and was presented on May 6th at the 2016 Undergraduate Research Conference as an exploration of physical language. A workshop of this piece was later produced by Dixon Place on January 28th, 2017.