And yet, Goodman says "Willingnesss to accept countless alternative true or right world-versions does not mean everything goes, that tall stories are as good as short ones, . . . betokens no policy of laissez-faire. Standards distinguishing right from wrong versions become, if anything, more rather than less important." (94, 107). And this brings us to the crux of the issue: What standards? Goodman's recipe may make the Magritte more palatable. Then again it may not. Indeed, Magritte may have a thing or two to "say" to Goodman. What do you think?

Michel Foucault puzzles about some of these questions in his little book This Is Not A Pipe which also contains an exhange of letters between Foucault and Magritte as well as some more Magritte paintings. You may find Foucault's book helpful. Then again you may not.

You may gain some understanding of what Magritte may or may not have been thinking when he painted Ceci n'est pas une pipe by reading the short "manifesto" he published in 1929, called, simply enough, Les Mots et Les Images (Words and Images), reproduced in the print version of the paper topic.

Finally, what are we to make, what do you make, of the painting on the page following the following page. Is it a painting of the same subject?

What does it represent? What is it about? What is it a painting of?

Ceci nest pas une pipe was painted in 1929. It has been listed under two other titles as well: Wind and Song and The Treachery of Images. The other painting was painted in 1966; Magritte called it Les Deux Mysteres.

teuber@binah.cc.brandeis.edu

Back to Philosophy 113B Home Page