The 5th Symposium of the Nordic Wittgenstein Society

The aim of the symposium is to throw light on the relatively underexplored relations between Wittgenstein’s philosophy and the phenomenological tradition.

The 5th Symposium of the Nordic Wittgenstein Society: Wittgenstein and Phenomenology

University of Stavanger, Norway
May 30-31, 2014

There are a number of interesting points of contact between the two, consideration of which may contribute to a deeper understanding of each. Not only did Wittgenstein in his middle period see the need for what he called a phenomenology and a phenomenological language, but with its anti-scientistic, anti-speculative and descriptive orientation, his philosophy in general also exhibits several traits characteristic of the phenomenological tradition.  An important benefit of gaining a better grasp of these and other convergences is a clearer view of the divergences, and, thereby, of the relative strengths and weaknesses of the two approaches.

Relevant questions include: What is the nature and role of the phenomenology that Wittgenstein conceived in the late 1920’s and early 1930’s, and how does this conception compare to conceptions of phenomenology in the phenomenological tradition? May Wittgenstein’s methodological approach in his later philosophy be characterized as phenomenological, in a sense at least partly explicable by reference to traditional forms of phenomenology? How does Wittgenstein’s view of logic relate to views of logic within the phenomenological tradition? To what extent, if any, does the later Wittgenstein’s emphasis on practices and lifeforms show affinities with the praxis-orientation of phenomenologists like Husserl, Heidegger and Merleau-Ponty?

Keynote speakers:

  • Kevin Cahill (University of Bergen)
  • Juliet Floyd (Boston University)
  • Søren Overgaard (University of Copenhagen)

The symposium is organized by the Nordic Wittgenstein Society, in collaboration with the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Stavanger, and the University of Stavanger Research Area Conditions of Normativity.

The organizing committee consists of Cato Wittusen ( and Tarjei Mandt Larsen (, both of the University of Stavanger.

Presentations will be 25 minutes, Q&A not included. An abstract of maximum 500 words must be sent to Cato Wittusen ( by March 1.

Please include information about your affiliation in your communication. Notification of acceptance or rejection will be given by March 21.