January 15, 2006

So magnificently preposterous that it has to be redistributed

This from WFMU FM's Beware of the Blog:

...After freemasons and lumberjacks, the only logical next topic is Wittgenstein, like Mozart an Austrian native. During the first world war he wrote the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, in which he claimed to have solved all problems of philosophy. Here is the famous second paragraph of the introduction in English translation:

The book deals with the problems of philosophy and shows, as I believe, that the method of formulating these problems rests on the misunderstanding of the logic of our language. Its whole meaning could be summed up somewhat as follows: What can be said at all can be said clearly; and whereof one cannot speak thereof one must be silent.
That last half sentence just asks to be set to music, and it is strange that it took a whole 46 years until Finnish troubadour M. A. Numminen did just that, accompanied by the Sohon Torwet brass band. You can hear the tune with the original German lyrics "Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen" here (MP3).

Posted by oook at January 15, 2006 02:43 PM

truly superb! can one get lyrics in english?

Posted by: Ron at January 15, 2006 03:17 PM

Which lyrics? That Numminen/Wittgenstein song only has the one line "Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen", repeated many times. In English that is "whereof one cannot speak thereof one must be silent", like the post says.

Posted by: Lukas at January 15, 2006 05:21 PM

Ah so. And it works nicely in English too. I think I'll work on a Spanish translation

Posted by: Ron at January 15, 2006 07:17 PM

And on a related note, also from the WFMU universe -- Kenny G (not that one) sings Wittgenstein:


Scan to about 51:30 on the RealPlayer file...

Posted by: Brian at January 16, 2006 02:48 PM