Remarks on Colour
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Remarks on Colour

3.94 of 5 stars 3.94  ·  rating details  ·  252 ratings  ·  15 reviews
This book comprises material on colour which was written by Wittgenstein in the last eighteen months of his life. It is one of the few documents which shows him concentratedly at work on a single philosophical issue. The principal theme is the features of different colours, of different kinds of colour (metallic colour, the colours of flames, etc.) and of luminosity--a the...more
Paperback, 132 pages
Published August 1st 2003 by Blackwell Publishers (first published 1977)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Remarks on Colour, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Remarks on Colour

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 637)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Clay Mosman
There are two quotations in this book that summarize its content really well: (1) "We do not want to find a theory of color (neither a physiological nor a psychological one), but rather the logic of color concepts. And this accomplishes what people have unjustly expected from a theory." (2) "That which I am writing about so tediously, may be obvious to someone whose mind is less decrepit."

Wittgenstein not only reflects on difficulties in our perception of color concepts (like imagining a grey f...more
some thoughts I had:

“The description of the phenomena of colour-blindness is part of psychology: and therefore the description of the phenomena of normal vision, too? Psychology only describes the deviations of colour-blindness from normal vision.” This is another in a long line of critiques W. offers throughout his body of writing of the assumption that Psychology can properly deal with certain issues some presume it can deal with. The basis of all of these critiques is really, it seems to me,...more
Wittgenstein says, "We do not want to find a theory of color...but rather the logic of color concepts" (§188). An example of Wittgenstein's investigation of the logic of color concepts is his discussion of the relation between the concept of transparency and the concept of whiteness. While there can be transparent green glass, or red glass, there can't be transparent white glass. Whereas transparent green glass makes almost everything behind it look green (black objects continue looking black),...more
Reading his "On Certainty" may help to understand what Wittgenstein is doing in this book. It is again his questioning of our normalised world, which is sustained/disguised by the tradition of education and science through the practice of language. He does so with the problem of colour this time. In the case of "On Certainty", his self-contained philosophical inquery seems appropriate because of the subject matter. But I do think that method works well for "Remarks on Colour". Our conceptions of...more
"suppose someone were to suggest that a traffic light be brown."
"There is gold paint, but Rembrandt didn't use it to paint a golden helmet."
"Why don't we include black and white in the color circle? Only because we have a feeling that it's wrong?"

quite a little treasure. i'm happy i read this.
M. W.
This is Wittgenstein's collection of questions, statements, and observations on color. This is a must-read for visual artists and colorists in every field. Although the format is a bit tedious at first, you get into a rhythm and fall into a read-ponder-read cadence that this book requires.
imagine someone pointing to a place in the iris of a rembrandt eye and saying: "the walls in my room should be painted this colour". (9)

ludwig wittgenstein. remarks on colour. ed. g.e.m. anscombe. trans. linda l. mcalister and margarete schättle. oxford: blackwell publishing, 1977.
Erik Graff
Jun 07, 2012 Erik Graff rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Wittgenstein fans
Recommended to Erik by: Bill Ellos
Shelves: philosophy
I read this with some interest, having done a paper on color theory for a science class freshman year in high school. This was read for an independent study conducted by Father William Ellos at Loyola University Chicago years later.
Best introduction to Wittgenstein since it discusses the logic of colour terms and not the psychology of colour perception.
III-295: "That which I am writing about so tediously, may be obvious to someone whose mind is less decrepit."
"295. That which I am writing about so tediously, may be obvious to someone whose mind is less decrepit."
Sara Leone
Along with Hans H. - biggest influence on my painting.
One of the most amazing things I have ever read.
A must for any colorist
Z marked it as to-read
Sep 15, 2014
Jessica marked it as to-read
Sep 09, 2014
Andrew marked it as to-read
Sep 04, 2014
Ksenia marked it as to-read
Aug 30, 2014
Catarina marked it as to-read
Aug 30, 2014
imightberong marked it as to-read
Aug 30, 2014
Nick Jirsa
Nick Jirsa marked it as to-read
Aug 24, 2014
Cecilia marked it as to-read
Aug 22, 2014
Darryl Zeigler
Darryl Zeigler marked it as to-read
Aug 21, 2014
Nic Foley
Nic Foley marked it as to-read
Aug 19, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 21 22 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Wittgenstein on Rules and Private Language: An Elementary Exposition
  • Wittgenstein's Vienna
  • Theory of Colours
  • Ludwig Wittgenstein: The Duty of Genius
  • On Being Blue
  • Chromophobia
  • The Concept of Irony/Schelling Lecture Notes (Kierkegaard's Writings, Volume 2)
  • The Post Card: From Socrates to Freud and Beyond
  • Speech Acts: An Essay in the Philosophy of Language
  • Wittgenstein's Poker: The Story of a Ten-Minute Argument Between Two Great Philosophers
  • Lectures on the History of Moral Philosophy
  • Black: The History of a Color
  • Re Joyce
  • From a Logical Point of View: Nine Logico-Philosophical Essays
  • The Art of Color: The Subjective Experience and Objective Rationale of Color
  • On the Way to Language
  • Essential Works of Foucault (1954-1984), Volume 3: Power
  • Bright Earth: Art and the Invention of Color
Ludwig Josef Johann Wittgenstein (26 April 1889 – 29 April 1951) was an Austrian-British philosopher who worked primarily in logic, the philosophy of mathematics, the philosophy of mind, and the philosophy of language.

Described by Bertrand Russell as "the most perfect example I have ever known of genius as traditionally conceived, passionate, profound, intense, and dominating", he helped inspire t...more
More about Ludwig Wittgenstein...
Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus Philosophical Investigations On Certainty The Blue and Brown Books Culture and Value

Share This Book