Reflections on Hans-Georg Gadamer's "Wirkungsgeschichte" [Opmerkings oor Hans-Georg Gadamer se begrip van die " Wirkungsgeschichte"]

Fouche H.L. (2002)


Hans-Georg Gadamer's contribution to hermencutics can be summarized in a nutshell in his thesis that there is a "wirkungsgeschichtliche" dimension in all understanding. In this article I make four remarks on the meaning of this concept. Firstly: the universal claim of Gadamer docs not claim to describe the totality of understanding, but only an essential and forgotten dimension. Secondly: there are three ascending perspectives on art, tradition and speaking that constitute together the Wirkungsgeschichte. Every one of them demonstrates that understanding is not primarily an action of objectification, but a happening of participation. Thirdly: there are similar thinking patterns by different philosophers that demonstrate that Gadamer's concept of the Wirkungsgeschichte is not so new and strange. Lastly: Gadamer's use of Aristotle's concept of phronesis or judgement (practical reasoning) is the concretization of the Wirkungsgeschichte and his ereat contribution to hermeneutics.

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