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  1. On the Interpreter’s Choices: Making Hermeneutic Relativity Explicit.Lin Ma & Jaap van Brakel - 2018 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 17 (4):453-478.
    In this essay, we explore the various aspects of hermeneutic relativity that have rarely been explicitly discussed. Our notion of “hermeneutic relativity” can be seen as an extension, with significant revisions, of Gadamer’s notion of Vorurteil. It refers to various choices and constraints of the interpreter, including beliefs concerning the best way of doing philosophy, what criteria are to be used to evaluate competing interpretations, and so on. The interpreter cannot completely eliminate the guidance and constraint originating from his/her “background.” (...)
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  • Extension of Family Resemblance Concepts as a Necessary Condition of Interpretation Across Traditions.Jaap Van Brakel & Lin Ma - 2015 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 14 (4):475-497.
    In this paper we extend Wittgenstein’s notion of family resemblance to translation, interpretation, and comparison across traditions. There is no need for universals. This holds for everyday concepts such as green and qing 青, philosophical concepts such as emotion and qing 情, as well as philosophical categories such as form of life and dao 道. These notions as well as all other concepts from whatever tradition are family resemblance concepts. We introduce the notion of quasi-universal, which connects family resemblance concepts (...)
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