Gadamer's Repercussions: Reconsidering Philosophical Hermeneutics

By Bruce Krajewski | Go to book overview

PREFACE

This volume brings together some of the leading scholars in philosophical hermeneutics, as well as a few outsiders. Many of the contributors agreed to participate in this collection on the basis of their admiration for the work of Hans-Georg Gadamer, certainly one of the key German philosophers of the twentieth century, whose work has influenced not only philosophy but also the study of literature, art, music, sacred and legal texts, and medicine. The occasion for this collection was Gadamer's centenary in 2000. However, from the beginning, this collection was not intended as a festschrift, despite natural associations some have made when hearing about the catalyst for its production, nor did I set out to be disrespectful of Gadamer.

Some anticipated a celebratory volume, with the accompanying festive atmosphere. Others feared something like a replay of what has taken place with Ezra Pound, E. M. Cioran, Paul de Man, Martin Heidegger, Maurice Blanchot, 1 and others regarding those individuals' activities during the National Socialist period. This anxiety surfaced prior to Richard Wolin's “Untruth and Method: Nazism and the Complicities of Hans-Georg Gadamer, ” 2 a triumphant piece of oddness (as noted by, among others, Richard Palmer) that, in part, tries to translate Gadamer's own statements about his political life into shocking discoveries. This is not to say that res ipsa loquitur, or that Gadamer revealed all that might seem relevant about that matter. As a former student of Heidegger, Gadamer might have anticipated that the interrogation lamp on Heidegger would be directed eventually at Heidegger's family, friends, acquaintances, and students as well. We cannot distance ourselves in our study of Heidegger from the judgment that condemns Heidegger for his political action and inaction. Substitute “Gadamer” for every instance of “Heidegger” in that last sentence, and one begins to sense a problem with Wolin's position, one that wants to come to grips with an in-

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Gadamer's Repercussions: Reconsidering Philosophical Hermeneutics
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Contents v
  • Acknowledgments vii
  • Preface ix
  • Notes xi
  • Abbreviations xiii
  • Introduction - The Task of Hermeneutics as Philosophy 1
  • Notes *
  • Part One - Gadamer's Influence 13
  • Chapter 1 - On Hans-Georg Gadamer's 100th Birthday 15
  • Chapter 2 - Being That Can Be Understood is Language 21
  • Notes *
  • Chapter 3 - An Essay on Gadamer and Levinas 30
  • Notes 50
  • Chapter 4 - Gadamer and Romanticism 55
  • Notes *
  • Chapter 5 - Literature, Law, and Morality 82
  • Notes *
  • Chapter 6 - A Critique of Gadamer's Aesthetics 103
  • Notes *
  • Part Two - Gadamer and Dialogue 121
  • Chapter 7 - To Its Cultured Despisers 123
  • Notes *
  • Chapter 8 - Gadamer's Philosophy of Dialogue and Its Relation to the Postmodernism of Nietzsche, Heidegger, Derrida, and Strauss 145
  • Notes *
  • Chapter 9 - Meaningless Hermeneutics? 158
  • Notes *
  • Part Three - Gadamer in Question 167
  • Chapter 10 - Radio Nietzsche, Or, How to Fall Short of Philosophy 169
  • Notes *
  • Chapter 11 - Hans-Georg Gadamer's Philosophical Interventions Under National Socialism 212
  • Notes *
  • Chapter 12 - A Response to Orozco and Waite 229
  • Notes *
  • Chapter 13 - A Response to Zuckert 244
  • Notes *
  • Chapter 14 - A Response to Zuckert 256
  • Notes *
  • Contributors 307
  • Index 311
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