Hans-Georg Gadamer on Education, Poetry, and History: Applied Hermeneutics

By Dieter Misgeld; Graeme Nicholson et al. | Go to book overview

Chapter 15
THE LIMITATIONS OF THE EXPERT

In order to discover something about the limitations of the expert, it is necessary to draw a few conceptual distinctions. Philosophy is not, as one often hears, the professional art of splitting hairs, the search for artificially precise definitions -- one who attempts to philosophize must first of all have an attentive ear for the language in which the thinking experience of many generations has been sedimented, long before we begin to attempt our own thinking. So, in this case as well, it is not superficial when I first ask whom we call experts and why we do this. One realizes immediately that this is a relatively new word, at least as a foreign word in the German language. And one asks oneself why this is such a new word.

Now with the great stream of experiences and images that flow in upon humanity it is precisely when something begins to stand out from the stream with a particular profile that we give it a name. So it is in this case as well. Evidently there was occasion to distinguish the role of the expert by the expression expertus. This surely does not only mean someone who is experienced. That is the Latin sense of the word expertus. It is not a profession to gain experience and to have gained experience, i.e., to be experienced. However, there is now a profession of mediating between the scientific culture of modernity and its social manifestations in practical life.

Therefore, the expert has an intermediate position. He is not the embodiment of the scientist or the researcher or the teacher. The expert stands between science, in which he must be competent and social and political praxis. Thereby it is already clear that he is not the authority for final decisions. The German word that we use for experts, is generally Gutachter. Gutachten is a good old German word and has been used since the sixteenth century, if I remember correctly. One must, however, listen to the word. Gutachten means, and in Gutachten resounds, something of what we mean in achten [honor] and erachten [deem]. Meines Erachtens [in my opinion], one says and means: I do not know this so absolutely -- perhaps one should ask another about it; but if I were asked, I would give this or that answer. In addition the Gutachter or the expert is subordinate to the actual decision makers in social and political life. This has actually

____________________
*
Essay published in Darmstadt, 1967.

-181-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Hans-Georg Gadamer on Education, Poetry, and History: Applied Hermeneutics
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 238

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.