Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia (1993)
What does it mean that understanding is the primary mode of human being in the world? How can new symbols refigure human temporal possibilities and narrative understandings? How do we interpret life, and what can be claimed as "truth"? These and related questions are explored by a collection of distinguished scholars from a variety of disciplines in Meanings in Texts and Actions. These essays constitute a critical encounter with the philosophy of Paul Ricoeur, who - along with Hans-Georg Gadamer - was largely responsible for the postwar emergence of a new hermeneutics. Having engaged in critical debates with thinkers in virtually every humanistic discipline, Ricoeur has managed to create a conversation among them, as this collection attests. Volume contributors - representatives of a range of disciplines including literary theory, theology and religious studies, comparative literature, film studies, history, political philosophy, ethics, and global studies - take up Ricoeur's questions and pose questions of their own in return. In so doing, they work toward new formulations in our thinking that address the contemporary challenges of deconstruction and postmodernism and pay particular attention to theology and its relation to humanistic culture.