Certain critics, e.g. Manfred Frank and Hans-Herbert Kögler, claim that Hans-Georg Gadamer's philosophical hermeneutics reduces the individual subject to a mere instrument of history and tradition, the latter reproducing themselves through the subject. However, Gadamer also emphasizes the active role of the subject in shaping and creating history and tradition. In this article I argue that the critics mistakenly emphasize a one-sided conception of history. By incorporating both active and passive aspects of the subject, Gadamer's philosophical hermeneutics provides the (...) means by which the individual may be conceived more aptly in an interdependent, dialectical relation to their corresponding historical, cultural, and social context. (shrink)
Dany Rodier | : Cet article propose une analyse détaillée des considérations de Hans-Georg Gadamer sur l’herméneutique théologique proprement dite. Pensée dans et pour la foi chrétienne, la conception de l’herméneutique théologique qu’il met en avant se veut essentiellement une herméneutique du texte biblique. Les réflexions de Gadamer sur ce thème nous conduisent cependant tout droit dans sa théorie de la littérature. La question directrice devient celle de la nature du texte religieux (entendons : du texte biblique, reçu en (...) son unité canonique) en tant que texte éminent, dont la structure singulière est mise en relief au moyen d’une éclairante comparaison avec les textes poétique, philosophie et juridique. L’Écriture, en tant qu’elle répond à la structure textuelle de la promesse, exige du lecteur une forme particulière d’appropriation qui trouve sa réalisation exemplaire dans la prédication. Toutefois, contre une lecture (Ommen, Eberhard, etc.) qui insiste sur la discontinuité de l’herméneutique théologique de Gadamer avec sa propre oeuvre philosophique, je soutiens la thèse de leur foncière cohérence. | : This paper offers a detailed analysis of Hans-Georg Gadamer’s considerations on theological hermeneutics proper. Thought within and for the Christian faith, the conception of theological hermeneutics he puts forward is mainly understood as a hermeneutics of the biblical text. However, Gadamer’s reflections on this theme bring us straight to his theory of literature. The guiding question becomes that about the nature of the religious text (meaning : the biblical text, received in its canonical unity) as eminent text, which peculiar structure is thrown into relief through an enlightening comparison with the poetical, the philosophical and the legal text. The Scripture, in that it has the textual structure of a promise, requires from the reader a particular form of appropriation, which finds its exemplary fulfillment in preaching. Against a reading that emphasizes discontinuity between Gadamer’s theological hermeneutics and his own philosophical work (Ommen, Eberhard, etc.) I defend the thesis of their fundamental coherence. (shrink)
Taking as our starting point Plato'smetaphor of the doctor as philosopher we reflect on some aspects of the epistemological status of medicine. The framework to this paper is the hermeneutics of Hans-Georg Gadamer which shows the paradoxical nature of Western medicine in choosing the body-object as its investigative starting point, while in actual fact dealing with subjects. Gadamer proposes a model of medicine as the art of understanding and dialogue, which is capable of bringing together its various constituent parts, (...) i.e. knowledge, knowing how to do and knowing how to be, in medical practice and in the physician'straining. The paper concludes with a brief discussion of the dyadic figure of the physician as Platonic master of the living totality and wounded healer, capable of activating the patient'sself-healing capacity. (shrink)
Las criticas a la filosofia moderna, vertidas desde el pensamiento actual, son sobradamente conocidas. Algunas de ellas han querido hacer realidad un proyecto de destrucciön radical. Ahora bien, tal destrucciön solo resultarä verdaderamente eficaz si, como de hecho estä sucediendo, va seguida de propuestas alternativas que se atengan de manera mäs adecuada a la realidad humana y a la estricta tarea de la filosofia. En esta Hnea de contribucion positiva se encuentra, a mi juicio, la particular aportaciön de la hermeneutica (...) filosöfica contemporänea, encaminada a la rehabilitaciön de la razön practica. En esta ponencia se harä menciön especial a la comprensiön de Hans-Georg Gadamer, el pensador alemän fallecido en 2002, que tan decididamente ha marcado el curso de la filosofia actual.Tal rehabilitaciön parece un paso necesario en el camino conducente a una comprensiön mäs acertada de la tarea filosöfica y de su objeto. El reconocimiento de algunos aspectos de la razön, tales como la flnitud o su caräcter situacional, puede contribuir a una vision mäs ajustada de su esencia y posibilidades. Elimina, ademäs, el peligroso riesgo que supone la pretension de lo absolute* e incondicionado. Admitir lo que podriamos denominar los Umites de la razön no significa ineurrir en posiciones relativistas ni eseepticas; constituye, tan solo, un necesario ejercicio de atenimiento a lo real. (shrink)
Hans-Georg Gadamer's contribution to hermeneutics can be summarized in a nut shell in his thesis that there is a “wirkungsgeschichtliche” dimension in all understanding. In this article I make four remarks on the meaning of this concept. Firstly: the universal claim of Gadamer does not claim to describe the totality of understanding, but only an essential and forgotten dimension. Secondly: there are three ascending perspectives on art, tradition and speaking that constitute together the Wirkungsgeschichte. Every one of them demonstrates (...) that understanding is not primarily an action of objectification, but a happening of participation. Thirdly: there are similar thinking patterns by different philosophers that demonstrate that Gadamer's concept of the Wirkungsgeschichte is not so new and strange. Lastly: Gadamer's use of Aristotle's concept of phronesis or judgement (practical reasoning) is the concretization of the Wirkungsgeschichte and his great contribution to hermeneutics. S. Afr. J. Philos. Vol.21(4) 2002: 274-290. (shrink)
La experiencia hermenéutica, para Gadamer, posee tres momentos fundamentales en los que se reúnen el componente empírico, histórico y el lingüístico. El objetivo general de este escrito es ver cómo se da este fenómeno en el caso de la experiencia estética. Para ello, en una primera parte, desarrollaremos el modelo del encuentro con otro que se comporta como un tú, es decir, que interpela e interroga, con lo que expondremos un aspecto esencial del carácter lingüístico de toda experiencia. En una (...) segunda parte nos preguntaremos si este modelo del ‘tú’ es extensible a la experiencia estética. En función de esto veremos los llamados tres momentos de la experiencia según Gadamer en el modo en que se dan tanto en el caso del encuentro con otro, que se comporta como un tú, y en el caso de la experiencia estética; destacando tangencialmente, en ambos casos, las vertientes kantianas de la exposición de Gadamer. Understanding and beauty: parallels between hermeneutic and aesthetic experience, according to Hans-Georg Gadamer According to Hans-Georg Gadamer the hermeneutical experience has three fundamental moments in which the empirical, historical and linguistic components meet. The overall objective of this paper is to see how this phenomenon occurs in the case of aesthetic experience. For this purpose, in the first part we will develop the model wherein one experiences an encounter with another who behaves like oneself, that is to say, who challenges and questions. This will expose an essential aspect of all linguistic experience. In the second part, we will inquiry if this model of the other being “you” can be extended to the aesthetic experience. On this basis we see the so-called three moments of the experience according to Gadamer, in the way they are displayed both for the encounter with another who behaves as a “ you” , and in the case of the aesthetic experience. For both cases, we will tangentially highlight the Kantian aspects of Gadamer’s explanation. (shrink)
This paper examines the presence of the Husserlian operative concept of the "lifeworld"in Hans-Georg Gadamer's hermeneutic philosophy. It is suggested that, regardless of Gadamer·s criticisms to the method and the foundational project of phenomenology, it is possible to highlight in his interpretation of Husserl's work relevant shared aspects for the clarification of his own position. These are concerned with the struggle against objectivism and its alienating effects against cultural and social praxis, as well as the rehabilitation of a pre-reflective (...) space previous to logic and scientific research, which are regarded by both authors as the ground where all cultural products are rooted. (shrink)
In this introductory article to the volume of the South African Journal of Philosophy in tribute of Hans- Georg Gadamer, the author, first, makes a few remarks about the nature of hermeneutics and Gadamer's views on the universality of the hermeneutical experience. This universality is, in particular, explained from the perspective of the “linguistic turn” in Gadamer's thought. Secondly, there is a brief discussion of certain particular aspects of Gadamer's contribution. Aspects of that contribution that are emphasized are: Gadamer's reevaluation (...) of prejudice, authority and tradition, his idea of “Wirkungs -geschichte”, his idea of meaning as a process rather than a given entity, his analogy between game- playing and the interpretation of art, and his dialogical conception of interpretation. The author concludes by developing his own estimate of the main thrust of Gadamer's contribution. This contribution consists of the way in which Gadamer's thought, on the one hand, represents a demonstration and embodiment of the kind of historical consciousness so typical of our times, but, on the other hand, also accomplishes this exemplification of historical consciousness while imaginatively avoiding the kind of relativistic historicism so typical of many other manifestations of the same trend. S. Afr. J. Philos. Vol.21(4) 2002: 228-241. (shrink)
Three things occur in this introductory article to a volume of the South African Journal of Philosophy in tribute of Hans- Georg Gadamer who died on March 14, 2002, at the age of 102. First, some historical details of Gadamer's life are provided. Second, the nine articles in the volume are briefly introduced. The authors are Denis Schmidt (the only non- South African), Anton van Niekerk, Bert Olivier, Andrea Hurst, Leon Fouché, Danie Strauss, Pieter Duvenage, Nirmala Pillay and Gerald Pillay. (...) Finally, short remarks are made about the relevance of Gadamer's work, and particularly his contribution to “understanding the nature of understanding”, for the South African situation. S. Afr. J. Philos. Vol.21(4) 2002: 219-222. (shrink)
Hans-Georg Gadamer [Obituary] February 11, 1900–March 13, 2002 With a profound sense of loss, we bid adieu to Professor Hans-Georg Gadamer, founding father of contemporary hermeneutics, interpreter par excellence, and honorary member of the International Institute for Hermeneutics.
Hans-Georg Gadamer’s hermeneutics contributes in an essential way to the understanding that truth cannot be adequately explained by scientific method. Hermeneutics then is not a method of interpretation, but is an investigation into the nature of understanding, which transcends the concept of method.
O espanto causado pelo “simples” existir guina agora rumo à compreensão e não mais ao conhecimento, conceito carregado pela tradição filosófica que parece não mais responder às questões de nossa época. A busca por este novo tipo de saber nada mais é do que a ânsia por lidarmos com nossas questões próprias no cotidiano, sendo no mundo com outros. Assim, a filosofia de Hans-Georg Gadamer se desenvolve em suas bases hermeneutas e fenomenológicas, buscando a compreensão de uma ontologia que (...) perpassa a vida prática. O presente artigo se compromete com a estrutura basilar necessária para a compreensão de sua hermenêutica filosófica e dos principais conceitos que compõem sua intrincada conjuntura, da qual devemos nos apropriar para que tenhamos novos horizontes de sentido abertos mediante nossas pretensões. A explicitação dessa estrutura no texto, como veremos, será a própria explicitação da fusão de horizontes (conceito fundamental para se compreender Gadamer), o que nos direciona à um novo âmbito de investigações no limiar ético-ontológico. (shrink)
Gadamer sought to distinguish his philosophical hermeneutics from theologically driven hermeneutics. Perhaps because of that, even though he has influenced contemporary theological hermeneutics, he has very little to say about theology or religion. What he does say about religion is drawn from a reductive interpretation of religion as myths meant that posit something transcendent to help us cope with our awareness of our death. Here I explain why he thought Christianity was such a paradoxical religion, how his views might be (...) useful for philosophers of religion and how they have been useful for theologians. I end with a critical discussion of Nicholas Wolterstorff's interpretation of Gadamer's views. (shrink)
In his 1972 essay “The Incapacity for Conversation” (“Die Unfähigkeit zum Gespräch”) Gadamer takes up the question of whether changes in society have made it such that we are losing our ability to participate in dialogue. By the end of the essay he argues that this is not the case and that the claim that someone is incapable of dialogue is merely an excuse for not listening to the other person. Over the course of the essay Gadamer provides a clarification (...) of what exactly counts as a conversation and of how conversation is connected to friendship. (shrink)
In this work I search for elements that contribute to the development of the ethical dimension of environmental education. I start with the existence of what C.A. Bowers calls “areas of silence” in the curriculum in both schools and universities. The reason for this silence, I argue, is to be found in the Cartesian conceptual structures of curricula. I suggest that the works of Bacon, Galileo and Descartes provoke a twofold process that I have termed the forgetting of tradition and (...) objectification of nature. As a corrective to this process, I explore the possibilities that the philosophical hermeneutics of Hans-Georg Gadamer opens for rehabilitation of tradition and de-objectification of nature. I work with the concept of the “dignity of things” present in Greek dialectics: that nature is not simply a projection of mind (as the neo-Kantians claim), but something that thought suffers. In my conclusions I argue that for nature to be reinserted into almost all areas of knowledge it is necessary that we respect “the otherness of nature.”. (shrink)
hat the author attempts to address in this paper is a Kantian question: not whether, but how is cross-cultural understanding possible? And specifically, what is a more effective approach for cross-cultural understanding? The answer lies in an analysis of two different models of cross-cultural understanding, that is, propositional and hermeneutic understanding. To begin with, the author presents a linguistic interpretation of culture, i.e., a culture as a linguistically formulated and transmitted symbolic system with its conceptual core as a scheme of (...) basic cultural presuppositions, which it referred to as a cultural language. After exploring the essential role of cultural presuppositions in cross-cultural understanding, the author discusses the traditional model of cross-cultural understanding, namely, the propositional model. Through critically examining the two popular versions of the propositional model, i.e., the projective approach and the adoptive approach to cross-cultural understanding, it is found that cross-cultural propositional understanding is doomed to failure. To move us beyond the absolutism-relativism trap embedded within propositional understanding, the author first introduces and discusses Hans-Georg Gadamer’s hermeneutic understanding, and then applies Hans-Georg Gadamer’s hermeneutic model of understanding to cross-cultural understanding. It is finally concluded that cross-cultural understanding is essentially hermeneutic—including the case of cultural learning, not propositional. Therefore, cross-cultural understanding is hermeneutically possible. (shrink)