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Wittgenstein and Natural Religion$
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Gordon Graham

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198713975

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198713975.001.0001

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Language Games, Forms of Life, and Grammar

Language Games, Forms of Life, and Grammar

(p.32) 3 Language Games, Forms of Life, and Grammar
Wittgenstein and Natural Religion

Gordon Graham

Oxford University Press

This chapter explores the decades-long debate about “Wittgensteinian fideism.” It is highly critical of both sides of this debate. Detailed criticism is offered of the use that has been made of the concepts of “language games,” “forms of life,” and “theology as grammar.” The chapter argues that all these concepts have been either extended or re-interpreted to arrive at a conception of “Wittgensteinianism” in the philosophy of religion that is endorsed as much by its defenders as by its opponents. It is, however, a conception that is very inadequately grounded in Wittgenstein’s philosophical work.

Keywords:   Wittgensteinian fideism, language games, forms of life, depth grammar, K. Nielsen, D.Z. Phillips

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