Philosophy Compass 7 (1):33-42 (2012)

David Vessey
Grand Valley State University
Recently philosophers interested in bridging the gap between continental and analytic philosophy have looked to connecting Hans‐Georg Gadamer’s philosophical hermeneutics with Donald Davidson’s philosophy of language. Both seem to share a number of positions, and each was familiar with the other’s writings. In this essay, I look at Davidson’s criticisms of Gadamer’s hermeneutics—in particular Gadamer’s view that dialogue always depends on a shared language and, when successful, produces a new common language to understand a topic. I argue that Davidson’s objections miss the way Gadamer is using conversation as a technical term. Working out the difference between what Davidson and Gadamer mean reveals a deeper divide between their views about the relation between language and thought
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DOI 10.1111/j.1747-9991.2011.00452.x
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Truth, Language, and History.Donald Davidson - 2005 - Oxford University Press.
Philosophical Hermeneutics, 30th Anniversary Edition.David E. Linge (ed.) - 1976 - University of California Press.

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