Wittgenstein and Music

An interesting triage of musical quality by one of the worlds most famous philosophers.

I ran across a paper entitled Wittgenstein, Modern Music, and the Myth of Progress written by Eran Guter. It is pretty dense stuff, as good philosophy tends to be, but I like the categorization presented by Guter.

Guter’s study is based not on a work published by Wittgenstein, but on entries in Wittgenstein’s copious diaries. In several of his diary entries, Wittgenstein made a distinction between three kinds of music: badvacuous, and good.

These are categories that apply to any form of art. I will try to express them in simpler terms Wittgenstein and Guter’s idea of three kinds of music.

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