The Australian, August 6, 2008

…Wittgenstein was proud that his philosophy classes (in 1930s Cambridge) were attended by convinced Communists and convinced Catholics, and devotees of his thought have included highly conservative judges, Marxist-Leninists and every shade of liberal between. Like many a rigorous liberal educator before and since, he had a professional ethic that made it his primary duty not to tell students what to think, but how to think clearly and well, not to teach students what to believe, but how to argue for and defend what they believed in the most rigorous possible way. Most of the student theses I analyse in my new book, The Trouble with Theory, espouse leftish views and causes (views and causes with which I have a fair amount of sympathy) but the desperately question-begging way in which they do so does nothing to win them converts. And had they been right-wing or conservative in orientation, the same would have been true.

Entire article here.

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