[[ read online Pdf ]] Truth and Method Author Hans-Georg Gadamer – Selindameditasyon.com

Truth and Method One of the greatest philosophical writings of the twentieth century, and one of the few that actually matters As the status of science rose in modernity Gadamer sets out to justify the relevance of the humanities and show the possibility and importance of non scientific truth A long and technical book Not to be read without a decent background in Continental philosophy and some serious patience. Wow, Gadamer really knocks it out of the park It s a long, fairly dense book sorry but he s basically undermining the modern conception of objective truth Now, I don t mean that he s treating truth less seriously or holding out a vacuous anything goes mentality rather, he argues that we have built such an abstract conception of proof and objectivity that we ve actually lost truth in the process Instead he suggests we recover the fact that real human knowing and existing occurs in Wow, Gadamer really knocks it out of the park It s a long, fairly dense book sorry but he s basically undermining the modern conception of objective truth Now, I don t mean that he s treating truth less seriously or holding out a vacuous anything goes mentality rather, he argues that we have built such an abstract conception of proof and objectivity that we ve actually lost truth in the process Instead he suggests we recover the fact that real human knowing and existing occurs in time, in communities, in bodies This means rejecting first a recasting of the humanities according to the controlled empirical methods of the natural sciences arguing instead that we recover the art of interpretation for understanding and then a conception of interpretation which would make the object of understanding original authorial intent this being an abstraction, not a lived engagement with the text.Powerful stuff A huge bombshell for the 20th century This is one of those great moments where a great student follows his master Heidegger yet gives us a new product and not simply a repetition of his master In short, for Gadamer language is the horizon of being As Kant was wrong to seek a thing in itself, so we also should beware of a meaning in itself Gadamer begins and ends his work on a strange note the aesthetics and interpretation of art It s not that art determines how we interpret text, but art allows Gadamer to illustrate no pun This is one of those great moments where a great student follows his master Heidegger yet gives us a new product and not simply a repetition of his master In short, for Gadamer language is the horizon of being As Kant was wrong to seek a thing in itself, so we also should beware of a meaning in itself Gadamer begins and ends his work on a strange note the aesthetics and interpretation of art It s not that art determines how we interpret text, but art allows Gadamer to illustrate no pun intended the tension given that great works of art are considered timeless, yet they were produced in historical, finite circumstances This tension points to the horizon, a key Gadamerian term.Every experience has implicit horizons of before and after and finally fuses with the continuum of experiences present in the before and after to form a unified flow of experience 246 Df horizon not a rigid boundary but something that moves with and invites one to advance further Everything that is given as existent is given in terms of a world and hence brings the world horizon with it As a horizon phenomenon world is essentially related to subjectivity, and this relation means also that it exists in transciency Hermeneutical circle possesses an ontological positive significance We have already fore projected before we even approach the text This creates an openness which situates our meaning with other meanings Understanding is a participation in the event of tradition and not so much a subjective act 302 Horizons are temporally conditioned Time is not a gulf to be crossed by a supportive ground in which the present is rooted We cannot stand outside of our situation All self knowledge arises from what is historically pre given, what Hegel calls substance 313 Horizon every finite present has its limitations Every situation represents a standpoint that limits the possibility of vision Horizons move with us When we understand something, we fuse the horizons between text and interpreter Fusion of horizons We regain concepts of a historical past in such a way that it also includes our own comprehension of them 382.This will go down as one of those truly great books Ground breaking works It s not super hard to read simply because it is well written However, he does presuppose a good bit of Hegel and Heidegger, so keep that in mind Gadamer is in the line of thinkers devoted to hermeneutics, a field of thought that at one time desired to build a science of the interpretation of texts Gadamer completely disputes the science, but acknowledges his part in the tradition that saught a true method in achieving communion with the text In the modern, academic form of hermeneutics, these texts were often historical Thus, the question of how one could open oneself to the necessarily foreign world of another historical situation be Gadamer is in the line of thinkers devoted to hermeneutics, a field of thought that at one time desired to build a science of the interpretation of texts Gadamer completely disputes the science, but acknowledges his part in the tradition that saught a true method in achieving communion with the text In the modern, academic form of hermeneutics, these texts were often historical Thus, the question of how one could open oneself to the necessarily foreign world of another historical situation became primary One aspect of contemporay hermeneutics, based in Gadamer and Ricoeur,is the belief that earlier thinkers were naive in their ideal of complete empathic connection with the historical past All contact with new worlds is a shift that brings partial understanding the investigator brings his own world view into the very questions that he brings to the text The text inserts its own weight into this discourse because the interpretor never just steps back into his previous world having made adjustments for the historical He she is a slightly different person, the elements of their worldview adjusted by certain unavoidable assertions from the text In fact, the reader of these texts is a very mobile, uncentered person, and it has been argued that in theirgentle fashion, Gadamer and Riceur dismantled the metaphysical subject almost as thoroughly as their Continental companions, say Foucault or Levi Strauss And like other Continental thinkers, the text flew off the printed page and became the model for dealing with all sorts of incoming, new information Gadamer is a major part of an image I have of human transaction with the world and it assumes a very laden upon participant This person carries the burden of every past influence from his national cultural situation to church membership to his best friend in kindergarden to his proclivity for colds Actually, Gadamer would not appreciate the over emphasis on burdens, because, indeed, these are the the same influences that provide for his possibilities All these influences, Gadamer is willing to calling them prejudices, provide the horizon with which he meets the world This horizon is the front line,let us say, of a mass of history that is never in total equalibrium, but rather held in tentative containment Each encounter with a different historical situation, a new text, a discussion, disrupts that front line, sometimes minutely and sometimes with major shifts However, the encounter can never result in complete agreement, complete empathy with the text or historical figure there s just too much contrary weigh from the past Equally important, why would this person moving through the world ask a question of the past, of the text, if he had achieved complete equalibrium from his previous encounter with the world It is the lack of having all components brought together that forces the questions that initiates the next discussion, the next reading We cannot encounter the world with anythingthan this tentative adjustment of necessarily contrary impulses, and what has made Gadamer controversial is the view that all truth consists in this tentative containment Truth is the very temporay condition that results from close attention to the matter at hand, and even , from the self analysis that allows some degree of awareness of the prejudices which most impinge on our reflection Thus, Gadamer s thinker is a very serious person in distinction to someone like Rorty, who at one time sounded like an academic jokester, throwing out ideas to entertain the other faculty members However, like Rorty, Gadamer resists even the final historian scientist who has had the priviledge of weeding through the discredited theories of the past There is always distortion, not only in the input that determines the output, but also as the force that demands the question in the first place Hans Georg Gadamer s Truth and Method must be considered alongside the great works of Dilthey, Husserl, and Heidegger as a treatise on hermeneutics, defined by Gadamer as understanding and the correct interpretation of what has been understood More commonly, people define hermeneutics as the study theory of interpretation Two major contentions that help frame his analysis are 1 rejection of the view that proper understanding calls for eliminating the influence of the interpreter s context Hans Georg Gadamer s Truth and Method must be considered alongside the great works of Dilthey, Husserl, and Heidegger as a treatise on hermeneutics, defined by Gadamer as understanding and the correct interpretation of what has been understood More commonly, people define hermeneutics as the study theory of interpretation Two major contentions that help frame his analysis are 1 rejection of the view that proper understanding calls for eliminating the influence of the interpreter s context 2 rejection of the view that the author s intent in writing a text has any special weight to it As to the first point, he argues that it is simply not possible for the interpreter to escape his present situation He advances the concept of the horizon For Gadamer, the horizon is.the range of vision that includes everything that can be seen from a particular vantage point It is the grounding of the interpreter, including that person s language, that fixes the possibilities of what that person can see and understand In Gadamer s words, it is.the way in which thought is tied to its finite determination, and the nature of the law of the expansion of the range of vision A person who has no horizon is a man who does not see far enough and hence over values what is nearest to him Contrariwise, to have an horizon means not to be limited to what is nearest, but to be able to see beyond it A person who has an horizon knows the relative significance of everything within this horizon, as near or far, great or small To interpret the words of the past, Gadamer says that Just as in a conversation, when we have discovered the standpoint and horizon of the other person, his ideas become intelligible, without our necessarily having to agree with him, the person who thinks historically comes to understand the meaning of what has been handed down, without necessarily agreeing with it, or seeing himself in it In interpreting texts, two horizons are involved one is the horizon of the interpreter and the other the particular historical horizon into which he or she places him or herself in trying to understand the text Thus, the two horizons interact to produce understanding The historical horizon of the text is not fixed it cannot take on a meaning that is unchanged for all times and places Here, he gets to the heart of successful hermeneutic inquiry the fusing of horizons He says Hence the horizon of the present cannot be formed with the past There is noan isolated horizon of the present than there are historical horizons Understanding, rather, is always the fusion of these horizons which we imagine to exist by themselves.Every encounter with tradition that takes place within historical consciousness involves the experience of the tension between the text and the present But what of the intention of the original author of a text That leads to another of Gadamer s major points, by now clearly implicit in his idea of fusion of horizons In short, it is not particularly important in trying to interpret a text Once a text is created by its author, it becomes, so to speak, freed from the creator and begins to take on its own meaning, based upon its historical horizon, continually evolving as circumstances change It is the text s horizon that interacts with the interpreter s horizon So what To the extent that reality is the subject of inquiry, our understanding of reality will change as the historical horizon of a particular claim about reality changes We can, then, never come to a satisfactory conclusion about a transcendental reality, about an absolute truth Is relativism the end product of the endeavor The hermeneutist in the Gadamerian tradition would simply note that there is no way out This is one of the most historically important works available on interpretation It is difficult and challenging as a work however, the effort to learn from Gadamer is well worth it Gadamer s erudition in the field of history of hermeneutics is impressive, but a less informed reader such as I am can often find himself in a difficult situation of having to interpret polemics with a thesis he doesn t know All these obstacles are overweighted by the depth and clarity of author s insight when he starts to explore the problem itself How can we understand historical tradition Exposing inner contradictions of subjectivistic or relativistic historism he concludes that the hermen Gadamer s erudition in the field of history of hermeneutics is impressive, but a less informed reader such as I am can often find himself in a difficult situation of having to interpret polemics with a thesis he doesn t know All these obstacles are overweighted by the depth and clarity of author s insight when he starts to explore the problem itself How can we understand historical tradition Exposing inner contradictions of subjectivistic or relativistic historism he concludes that the hermeneutic circle, the fact that tradition already preshapes our understanding of tradition is no hindrance to understanding, but basic principle that makes any understanding possible.I was overwhelmed especially by the revelatory power of the final part, which shows the universal aspect of hermeneutics Being that could be understood is language Therefore all our understanding of being is actually interpretation Here is another book that may have killed me but I have endured and won the battle This is a very fascinating book that is a translation of German philosophy regarding how we determine truth in the humanities Some really beautiful moments, and lots of ideas that resonated with me However, like Derrida, the text is often too dense and he seems to purposely be difficult For that he does not get five stars What else can a reader do Punish philosophers by withholding stars That will do it Here is another book that may have killed me but I have endured and won the battle This is a very fascinating book that is a translation of German philosophy regarding how we determine truth in the humanities Some really beautiful moments, and lots of ideas that resonated with me However, like Derrida, the text is often too dense and he seems to purposely be difficult For that he does not get five stars What else can a reader do Punish philosophers by withholding stars That will do it Dear philosophers, you may know how to think well Next task how to write well I find the idea of rating Truth and Method on a star system kind of offensive after Gadamer did so much to overturn the ontological prejudice that being is what can be quantified Reading this book was one of the joys of my life I finished it July 4 three years ago, happy to ignore the jingoistic explosions all around me , and I honestly didn t find it all that difficult I wouldn t lie about that who would deny that continental philosophy is often EXTREMELY difficult At times in my reading l I find the idea of rating Truth and Method on a star system kind of offensive after Gadamer did so much to overturn the ontological prejudice that being is what can be quantified Reading this book was one of the joys of my life I finished it July 4 three years ago, happy to ignore the jingoistic explosions all around me , and I honestly didn t find it all that difficult I wouldn t lie about that who would deny that continental philosophy is often EXTREMELY difficult At times in my reading life I ve been bludgeoned by Husserl, Heidegger, even Merleau Ponty, but not Gadamer Yet he s fully the peer of these other thinkers By the end of Truth and Method I felt illuminated, not beaten down.In his own words The structure of play absorbs the player into itself, and thus frees him from the burden of taking the initiative, which constitutes the actual strain of existence Each science, as science, has in advance projected a field of objects such that to know them is to govern them this is contrasted with In understanding we are drawn into an event of truth and arrive, as it were, too late if we want to know what we are supposed to believe Being that can be understood is language Written in the s, Truth and Method is Gadamer s magnum opus An astonishing synthesis of literary criticism, philosophy, theology, the theory of law and classical scholarship, it is undoubtedly one of the most important texts in twentieth century philosophy Looking behind the self consciousness of science, he discusses the tense relationship between truth and methodology In examining the different experiences of truth, he aims to present the hermeneutic phenomenon in its fullest extent


About the Author: Hans-Georg Gadamer

Hans Georg Gadamer was born February 11, 1900 in Marburg, Germany Arabic Gadamer showed an early aptitude for studies in philosophy and after receiving his doctoral degree in 1922 he went on to work directly under Martin Heidegger for a period of five years This had a profound and lasting effect on Gadamer s philosophical progression Gadamer was a teacher for most of his life, and published several important works Truth and Method is considered his magnum opus In this work Heidegger s notion of hermeneutics is seen clearly hermeneutics is not something abstract that one can pick up and leave at will, but rather is something that one does at all times To both Heidegger and to Gadamer, hermeneutics is not restricted to texts but to everything encountered in one s life Gadamer is most well known for the notion of a horizon of interpretation, which states that one does not simply interpret something, but that in the act of interpretation one becomes changed as well In this way, he takes some of the notions from Heidegger s Being and Time, notably that which Heidegger had to say about prejudgements and their role in interpreting and he turns them into apositive notion Gadamer sees every act and experience which is a hermeneutical experience to a Gadamerian as a chance to call into question and to change those prejudgements, for in the horizon of interpretation those prejudgements are not forever fixed Gadamer is considered the most important writer on the nature and task of hermeneutics of the 20th century, which was still widely considered a niche within Biblical studies until Truth and Method was widely read and discussed He died at the age of 102 in Heidelberg March, 2002.


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