I shall highlight some of its key themes and their relation to contemporary philosophical thought. By way of a preliminary, I comment first on the contemporary status of the Tractatus.

The Tractatus is a work of supreme elegance and economy, whose ideas combine a captivating simplicity with a profundity and comprehensiveness that becomes more striking the more one studies the book. Its historical influence was profound. But few if any contemporary readers accept its vision of language, logic, and reality. It is for the most part seen rather as a powerful statement of a particular historical position: a position developed in response to problems with which Russell and Frege were wrestling, which offers a novel and ingenious solution to those problems, but which is not, in the end, sustainable.