JOACHIM SCHULTE Does the Devil in Hell Have a Form of Life? 125
125 Does the Devil in Hell Have a Form of Life? JOACHIM SCHULTE The title of my paper comes from a little-known passage to be found in a manuscript Wittgenstein wrote in 1944. The passage is short and apparently not connected with the material surround- ing it, some of which is accessible in the last part of Wittgenstein’s Remarks on the Foundations of Mathematics. The passage reads as follows: Even the devil in hell has one form of life; and the world would not be complete without it.1 It is surely worth trying to understand what this passage means, but I shall make an attempt to do so only at the end of this paper. Before I get there, quite a few things need to be clarified. So I shall return to this nice quotation after a number of preparatory remarks. The English expression “form of life” is the usual translation of Wittgenstein’s compound noun “Lebensform”. This term enjoys a certain reputation, perhaps even notoriety, among people inter- ested in Wittgenstein’s philosophy. Like the expression “family resemblance”, for instance, it is well-known and much discussed, even though it does not occur all that often in his published writ- ings. There are three occurrences of the word in the Philosophical Investigations proper and two in the fragment on philosophy of 1 MS 127, 128: “Auch der Teufel in der Hölle hat eine Form des Lebens; & die Welt wäre nicht vollständig ohne sie”. Quotations from Wittgenstein’s manu- scripts are...
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