Truth

In Niall Keane & Chris Lawn (eds.), A Companion to Hermeneutics. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley. pp. 96–104 (2015)
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Abstract

The tradition of philosophical hermeneutics does not offer a definitive answer to the question “What is truth?” and the inquiry into the relationship between truth and interpretation. Instead, it presents a number of ways in which this question can be asked and discusses the validity and relevance of some plausible responses. Modern hermeneuticians emphasize the interpretative nature of human thought and existence. For Heidegger and Gadamer, truth concerns the way we lead our lives. Dilthey and Nietzsche contemplate the role of the human sciences in a landscape of shifting historical and cultural horizons, arriving at quite different conclusions with respect to the possibility of truth and objectivity. Events and symbolic expressions are products of human intentions and desires, and must be understood as such. For Dilthey, this dimension of meaning is, so to speak, the imprint of human historicity.

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Kristin Gjesdal
Temple University

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