Ingolf Max (Universität Leipzig):
The Philosophical Relevance of Chess Analogies
Chess analogies are a fruitful philosophical tool for demonstrating the complex variety of rules and their family resemblances to each other. We begin with a brief consideration of Frege's critique of the formalistic conception of mathematics, which his Jenaear colleague Thomae tried to support with analogies to chess. We then consider a paragraph from the Basic Laws of Arithmetic II (1903), in which Frege tentatively gets involved with the opponent's position. To take a closer look at chess, let's use the terms codex and strategy in our analysis language, which allow us to distinguish four forms of harmony. Playing chess can – with respect to the FIDE-laws – be partially described as codex-based strategy, but never reduced to it, since chess in a broader sense also includes aspects of non-codex-based (“pure”) strategy. We draw our attention to the FIDE Laws of Chess, article 4 "The act of moving the pieces", which is underexposed in the philosophical discourse – e.g., by Peregrin (2014) – and allows the distinction between “executing illegal moves” and “illegal execution of moves” Using chess analogies, we can also illuminate cases in which a sub-action already fixes the overall result, whereby the sub-action itself cannot represent a legal move in our codex. If time permits, the variety of chess analogies in Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations could be exemplified. Finally, we see an enormous variety of related and interconnected meanings of the terms "chess", "rule" and even "analogy" itself.