Wittgenstein's political milieu.
WITTGENSTEIN, Ludwig. Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus. With an Introduction by Bertrand Russell, F.R.S. New York: Harcourt, Brace & Company, Inc., 1922.
8vo. Original dark blue cloth, gilt lettering to spine; embossed device to upper board; pp. [vi], 7-189, [iii], with no publisher's advertisments; parallel texts in German and English throughout, as well as several diagrams; a little scuffed, particuarly to head and foot of spine, a few pages slightly roughly opened at the upper edge; else internally near-fine.
First US edition, printed from the original English sheets with a new title page.
Wittgenstein's seminal work first appeared in 1921 in the German Annalen der Naturphilosophie as 'Logisch-Philosophische Abhandlung', although it was plagued by errors, to the extent that Wittgenstein told a friend that he regarded it as a "pirated edition" (Monk, p. 205). Later, it was revised and translated for its first appearance in English by Wittgenstein himself. It was the only full-length philosophical book published by Wittgenstein in his lifetime.
The tersely aphoristic style of the Tractatus has become famous as much for its difficulty as for its absolute though paradoxical consistency with Wittgenstein's thesis: "What can be said at all can be said clearly; and whereof one cannot speak thereof one must be silent" (p. 27). His central view, that propositions are pictures of reality, became one of the most influential, if contentious, ideas in the philosophy of language. At the heart of his philosophy lies a vision of a system of inexpressible logical relationships beyond language's reach, an idea which still underpins much of the work in this field today.
It is now recognised as one of the philosophical masterpieces of the 20th century.