Paul Ricoeur has been hailed as one of the most important thinkers of the century. Oneself as Another, the clearest account of his "philosophical ethics," substantiates this position and lays the groundwork for a metaphysics of morals.
This is a collection in translation of essays by Paul Ricoeur which presents a comprehensive view of his philosophical hermeneutics, its relation to the views of his predecessors in the tradition and its consequences for the social sciences. The volume has three parts. The studies in the first part examine the history of hermeneutics, its central themes and the outstanding issues it has to confront. In Part II, Ricoeur's own current, constructive position is developed. A concept of the text is (...) formulated as the implications of the theory are pursued into the domains of sociology, psychoanalysis and history. Many of the essays appear here in English for the first time; the editor's introduction brings out their background in Ricoeur's thought and the continuity of his concerns. The volume will be of great importance for those interested in hermeneutics and Ricoeur's contribution to it, and will demonstrate how much his approach offers to a number of disciplines. (shrink)
Paul Ricoeur was one of the most important philosophers of the twentieth century. In this short and accessible book, he turns to a topic at the heart of much of his work: What is translation and why is it so important? Reminding us that The Bible, the Koran, the Torah and the works of the great philosophers are often only ever read in translation, Ricoeur reminds us that translation not only spreads knowledge but can change its very meaning. In spite (...) of these risk, he argues that in a climate of ethnic and religious conflict, the art and ethics of translation are invaluable. Drawing on interesting examples such as the translation of early Greek philosophy during the Renaissance, the poetry of Paul Celan and the work of Hannah Arendt, he reflects not only on the challenges of translating one language into another but how one community speaks to another. Throughout, Ricoeur shows how to move through life is to navigate a world that requires translation itself. Paul Ricoeur died in 2005. He was one of the great contemporary French philosophers and a leading figure in hermeneutics, psychoanalytic thought, literary theory and religion. His many books include Freud and Philosophy and Time and Narrative. (shrink)
Paul Ricoeur was one of the foremost interpreters and translators of Edmund Husserl's philosophy. These nine essays present Ricoeur's interpretation of the most important of Husserl's writings, with emphasis on his philosophy of consciousness rather than his work in logic. In Ricoeur's philosophy, phenomenology and existentialism came of age and these essays provide an introduction to the Husserlian elements which most heavily influenced his own philosophical position.
Incredible originality of thought in areas as vast as phenomenology, religion, hermeneutics, psychoanalysis, intersubjectivity, language, Marxism, and structuralism has made Paul Ricoeur one of the philosophical giants of the twentieth ...
Paul Ricoeur’s contribution to the theory of interpretation, or hermeneutics, is considerable: he ranks among the masters of this discipline alongside Schleiermacher, Dilthey, Heidegger and Gadamer. In addition to major works like _The Conflict of Interpretations_, he wrote many articles and shorter texts which deserve to be discovered and rediscovered. These allow us to gain a deeper understanding of the development of his work over time and to appreciate the full range of his contribution. Some of the texts examine the (...) nature of metaphor while others guide the reader through the many challenges of the hermeneutic problem - from the symbol to the text, then to the text as action, taking full account of the ethical implications. Here one encounters Ricoeur’s reflections on the future of hermeneutics and his abiding concern to explore the relations between hermeneutics and analytical philosophy. Ricoeur’s contribution to biblical hermeneutics has also been decisive. Two masterful studies in this volume attest to Ricoeur’s attempt to explore the relations between revelation and truth, on the one hand, and between myths of salvation and reason, on the other. This book - the second volume of Ricoeur’s writings and lectures - brings together texts which appeared between 1972 and 2006. It is published under the auspices of Le Fonds Ricoeur. (shrink)
_Criticism and Conviction_ offers a rare opportunity to share personally in the intellectual life and journey of the eminent philosopher Paul Ricoeur. Internationally known for his influential works in hermeneutics, theology, psychoanalysis, and aesthetics, until now, Ricoeur has been conspicuously silent on the subject of himself. In this book--a conversation about his life and work with François Azouvi and Marc de Launay--Ricoeur reflects on a variety of philosophical, social, religious, and cultural topics, from the paradoxes of political power to the (...) relationship between life and art, and life and death. In the first of eight conversations, Ricoeur traces the trajectory of his life, recounting the origins of his convictions and the development of his intellect against the tragic events of the twentieth century. Declaring himself the "son of a victim of the First World War," Ricoeur, an orphan, sketches his early years in the house of stern but loving grandparents, and the molding of his intellect under the tutelage of Roland Dalbiez, Gabriel Marcel, and André Philip. Ricoeur tells the intriguing story of his capture and five-year imprisonment by the Germans during World War II, where he and his compatriots fashioned an intellectual life complete with a library and lectures, and where he, amazingly, was able to continue his dissertation research. Elegantly interweaving anecdotal with philosophical meditations, Ricoeur recounts his relationships with some of the twentieth century's greatest figures, such as Heidegger, Jaspers, and Eliade. He also shares his views on French philosophers and explains his tumultuous relationship with Jacques Lacan. And while expressing his deepest respect for the works of Claude Lévi-Strauss and Michel Foucault, Ricoeur reserves his greatest admiration for the narratologist Algirdas Julien Greimas. Ricoeur also explores the relationship between the philosophical and religious domains, attempting to reconcile the two poles in his thought. And readers who have struggled with Ricoeur's work will be grateful for these illuminating discussions that provide an invaluable key to his writings on language and narrative, especially those on metaphor and time. Spontaneous and lively, _Criticism and Conviction_ is a passionate confirmation of Ricoeur's eloquence, lucidity, and intellectual rigor, and affirms his position as one of this century's greatest thinkers. It is an essential book for anyone interested in philosophy and literary criticism. (shrink)
The configurational dimension, in turn, displays temporal features that may be opposed to these "features" of episodic time. The configurational arrangement makes the succession of events into significant wholes that are the correlate of the act of grouping together. Thanks to this reflective act—in the sense of Kant's Critique of Judgment—the whole plot may be translated into one "thought." "Thought," in this narrative context, may assume various meanings. It may characterize, for instance, following Aristotle's Poetics, the "theme" that accompanies the (...) "fable" or "plot" of a tragedy.1 "Thought" may also designate the "point" of the Hebraic maschal or of the biblical parable, concerning which Jeremias observes that the point of the parable is what allows us to translate it into a proverb or an aphorism. The term "thought" may also apply to the "colligatory terms" used in history writing, such terms as "the Renaissance," "the Industrial Revolution," and so on, which, according to Walsh and Dray, allow us to apprehend a set of historical events under a common denominator. In a word, the correlation between thought and plot supersedes the "then" and "and then" of mere succession. But it would be a complete mistake to consider "thought" as a-chronological. "Fable" and "theme" are as closely tied together as episode and configuration. The time of fable-and theme, if we may make of this a hyphenated expression, is more deeply temporal than the time of merely episodic narratives. · 1. It may be noted in passing that this correlation between "theme" and "plot" is also the basis of Northup Frye's "archetypal" criticism. Paul Ricoeur is professor of philosophy at the Université de Paris and John Nuveen Professor at the University of Chicago. Some of his works to appear in English are Husserl: An Analysis of His Phenomenology, Main Trends in Philosophy, and The Conflict of Interpretations: Essays on Hermeneutics. His previous contribution to Critical Inquiry, "The Metaphorical Process as Cognition, Imagination, and Feeling," appeared in the Autumn 1978 issue. (shrink)
But is not the word "metaphor" itself a metaphor, the metaphor of a displacement and therefore of a transfer in a kind of space? What is at stake is precisely the necessity of these spatial metaphors about metaphor included in our talk about "figures" of speech. . . . But in order to understand correctly the work of resemblance in metaphor and to introduce the pictorial or ironic moment at the right place, it is necessary briefly to recall the mutation (...) undergone by the theory of metaphor at the level of semantics by contrast with the tradition of classical rhetoric. In this tradition, metaphor was correctly described in terms of deviance, but this deviance was mistakenly ascribed to denomination only. Instead of giving a thing its usual common name, one designates it by means of a borrowed name, a "foreign" name in Aristotle's terminology. The rationale of this transfer of name was understood as the objective similarity between the things themselves or the subjective similarity between the attitudes linked to the grasping of these things. As concerns the goal of this transfer, it was supposed either to fill up a lexical lacuna, and therefore to serve the principle of economy which rules the endeavor of giving appropriate names to new things, new ideas, or new experiences, or to decorate discourse, and therefore to serve the main purpose of rhetorical discourse, which is to persuade and to please. Paul Ricoeur is professor of philosophy at the Université de Paris and John Nuveen Professor at the University of Chicago. He is editor of Revue de métaphysique et de morale and the author of many influential works on phenomenology, hermeneutics, and the philosophy of language. His most recent work to appear in English is The Rule of Metaphor: Multi-disciplinary Studies of the Creation of Meaning in Language. He has also contributed "Narrative Time" to Critical Inquiry. (shrink)
If Descartes's Cogito can be held as the opening of the era of modern subjectivity, it is to the extent that the I is taken for the first time in the position of foundation, i.e., as the ultimate condition for the possibility of all philosophical discourse. The question raised in this paper is whether the crisis of the Cogito, opened later by Hume, Nietzsche and Heidegger on different philosophical grounds, is not already contemporaneous to the very positing of the Cogito.
In an intentionally provocative essay published in the journal Esprit (January, 1983) on the occasion of its fiftieth anniversary, I ventured the following slogan: “Death to personalism; long live the person!” I was attempting to suggest that Mounier's formulation of personalism was, as he himself readily admitted, connected with a certain cultural and philosophical constellation which is no longer ours today: existentialism and Marxism are no longer the only opponents. They are no longer even opponents at all, against which personalism (...) would be required to define itself, at the risk of becoming one or another system or `ism'. I concluded my essay with the following citation from Mounier's Qu'est-ce que le personnalisme?: “We are witnessing [...] the first meanderings of a cyclical course where the explorations pursued to exhaustion along one path are are given up only to be rediscovered farther on, enriched by this forgetting and by the discoveries for which it cleared a path” (p. 11). In addition, I wanted to say that the person is still the most appropriate term to designate those investigations for which neither the term `con-sciousness', nor `subject', nor `individual' really apply, for the various reasons that I invoked at the time. I would like to discuss some of those investigations here, beyond the point reached in that essay, where I restricted myself to defining the person by an attitude in Eric Weil's sense, or as one would say in hermeneutics, by the everyday understanding that we have of it. Following Paul Landsberg, I used the criteria of crisis and commitment, adding to the latter certain corollaries such as fidelity over time to a higher cause, and acceptance of alterity and difference within personal identity. Now I would like to make use of contemporary investigations into language, action and narrative in order to provide the ethical constitution of the person with a substratum and roots, comparable to those explored by Emmanuel Mounier in Traité du Caractère. In this sense, the present study is an extension of Mounier's book. (shrink)