.small[What distinguished pre-1914 Vienna from most other European capitals, and what gave the Viennese school its particular intellectual competitive advantage, was that it was an imperial city rather than a national capital.]
.small[By 1910 Vienna had a population of 2m, the sixth-biggest city in the world.
Vienna was a mixture of classes and nationalities, faiths and worldviews.
The Viennese cultural elite encouraged intellectual collisions to trigger a social innovation.
Out of this came some of the most important intellectual schools of the 20th century, as well as the influential, and often highly eccentric, characters who went with it. These included one Sigmund Freud, who developed psychoanalysis in Vienna, in order to expose the common archetypes of the unconscious.]
.small[Ludwig Wittgenstein’s “Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus” remains the most famous text of Viennese philosophy. The pioneering logical positivism of the Vienna Circle, dominated by Moritz Schlick and Rudolf Carnap (both originally from Germany) was probably of greater influence, setting the scene for modern analytical philosophy with its strong affinity for the sciences.
The most accomplished of the circle was Otto Neurath. On top of his philosophy, he revolutionised the transmission of knowledge with new ways of translating complex information into simple, graphic pictograms: to make knowledge accessible was to make it democratic.]