“A Rest from Reason:  Wittgenstein, Drury, and the Difference Between Madness and Religion”

Philosophy:  The Journal of the Royal Institute of Philosophy

second author, K. Steslow

University of Otago, New Zealand

Anthony O’Hear, editor

Vol. 85, No. 332, April 2010:  245-258

Faced with troubling professional decisions in his long and successful career as a psychiatrist, M. O’C. Drury turned for direction to the philosophical work of his teacher and friend, Ludwig Wittgenstein. Of particular concern to Drury were the situations in which psychiatrists were expected to differentiate between instances of madness that were religious in form and instances of genuine religious experience that, for their oddity, landed believers in psychiatric consulting rooms. In this essay we consider the special orientation Wittgenstein’s philosophy gave Drury, for example the way in which Drury came to understand how even his search for a principle of differentiation between madness and religion was misleading and contrary to his own practice—how it involved ‘sitting back in a cool hour and attempting to solve this problem as a pure piece of theory. To be the detached, wise, external critic’ and not see himself and his own manner of life ‘as intimately involved in the settlement of this question.’

“A Machine for Becoming


The Denver Quarterly

Bin Ramke, editor

Vol. 42, No. 4, Spring 2008:  25-34

“Pacific Poetics”

The Midwest Quarterly:  A Journal of Contemporary Thought

Vol. XLIV, No. 2, Winter 2003:  195-210

“Girlyman:  Or, How Bertrand Russell Dressed Up Henri Bergson’s Philosophy of Intuition”

Southern Humanities Review

Spring 2002:  101-111

“Reconstruction:  A Response to Modernity’s Monsters”

ESQ:  A Journal of the American Renaissance

Vol. 47, 4th Quarter 2001:  243-263


click to download PDFEssays_files/Evans_RestfromReason_Philosophy.pdf
click to download PDFEssays_files/DenverQuarterly_assembled.pdf
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click to download PDFEssays_files/Girlyman_Evans_master.pdf
click to download PDFEssays_files/ESQ_Modernity%27sMonsters_KLEvans.pdf

“Why the Tractatus, like the Old Testament, is ‘Nothing but a Book’”

Philosophy:  The Journal of the Royal Institute of Philosophy

Anthony O’Hear, editor

Vol. 88, No. 344, April 2013

In The Education of the Human Race, G. E. Lessing helps his readers understand why the propositions of the Old Testament are pseudo-propositions, or why they do not resemble the significant propositions of natural science but the tautological propositions of mathematics and of logic. That is, the so-called propositions of the Old Testament do not teach readers whether what actually happens is this or that; rather what they teach us is to imagine expressions by substitution in such a way as to throw their structure into relief. One of Lessing’s most attentive readers was Wittgenstein. Or perhaps only Wittgenstein would have been able to grasp so immediately Lessing’s insight that the tautological or pseudo-propositions of the Old Testament invite thinking only when readers use them to understand ‘what is the case’ in the pictures (the thoughts) the propositions have—logically—constructed. Thus in this essay I use Wittgenstein’s reading of Lessing to throw light on his work in the Tractatus. Rather than take up the new logician’s interest in completely analyzing expressions (which would include settling the way a referent is referred to in an expression), Wittgenstein insists in the Tractatus that the expressions we use, even those that seem to be propositions or that contain assertions, are in fact designed to be elucidatory without saying anything about the nature of the subjects that figure in them. Wittgenstein’s great insight was to see that the propositional signs of our language are able to bring something to mind without saying what is a representation of what.

“The Missing Limb”

Wild Orchids

Sean Reynolds and Robert Dewhurst, editors

Vol. 1, Melville, 2009:  1-15

click to download PDFEssays_files/WildOrchids_Evans_final.pdf
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click to download PDFEssays_files/KLEvans_Philosophy_April_2013_Wittgenstein_Tractatus.pdf

“Charlie Kaufman, Screenwriter”

The Philosophy of Charlie Kaufman

David LaRocca, editor

The University Press of Kentucky

The Philosophy of Popular Culture

Mark T. Conard, Series Editor


“While Reading Wittgenstein”

Stanley Cavell: Philosophy, Literature and Criticism

James Loxley and Andrew Taylor, editors

Manchester University Press


“How Job Begat Larry:

The Present Situation in A Serious Man

The Philosophy of The Coen Brothers      UPDATED EDITION

Mark T. Conard, editor

The University Press of Kentucky

The Philosophy of Popular Culture


“Why the Tractatus, like the Old Testament, is ‘Nothing but a Book’”

Wittgenstein Reading

Daniel Steuer, Wolfgang Huemer, and

Sascha Bru, editors

De Gruyter


“Emerson as Critic—

The Arnoldian Ideal”

A Power to Translate the World: New Essays on Emerson and International Culture

David LaRocca and Ricardo Miguel-Alfonso, editors

Dartmouth College Press, 2015

Re-Mapping the Transnational: A Dartmouth Series in American Studies (Series Editor, Donald Pease)

click to download PDFEssays_files/Coen%20Brothers%20A%20Series%20Man_KLEvans.pdf
click to download PDFEssays_files/Charlie%20Kaufman_KLEvans_proof.pdf

“The Work of Art in the Age of

Embedded Journalism:

Fiction versus Depiction’”

The Philosophy of War Films

David LaRocca, editor

The University Press of Kentucky


click to download PDFEssays_files/KLEvans%20War%20Films%20Zero%20Dark%20Thirty.pdf