Monday, April 20, 2009

About hope and language, shivering and smiling...

"One can imagine an animal angry, frightened, unhappy, happy, startled. But hopeful? And why not? A dog believes his master is at the door. But can he also believe his master will come the day after to-morrow? (...) Can only those hope who can talk? Only those who have mastered the use of a language. That is to say, the phenomena of hope are modes of this complicated form of life."

"- I must tell you: I am frightened.
- I must tell you: it makes me shiver.
And one can say this in a smiling tone of voice too."

Wittgenstein, Philosophical Investigations, 3rd edit.,
translated by G. E. M. Anscombe, Prentice Hall

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