Interpretation and Self-Evidence: Husserl and Hermeneutics

  • David Carr
Part of the Phaenomenologica book series (PHAE, volume 106)


Hermeneutic philosophy, understood as a general theory of human understanding, is associated with the names of Paul Ricoeur and Hans-Georg Gadamer. Ricoeur and Gadamer developed their hermeneutic philosophies in relative independence of one another, and their theories first emerged in rather different forms: Gadamer’s in 1960 in Wahrheit und Methode, a historically presented conception applied primarily to the practice of the humanistic disciplines; Ricoeur’s in 1965 in De l’interpretation, an essay on Freud.1 But both philosophers take their cue from Heidegger in Being and Time and this lends their efforts a common provenance and a common accent.


Modern Philosophy Hermeneutic Philosopher Actual Encounter Humanistic Discipline Human Finitude 
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  1. 1.
    Hans-Georg Gadamer, Wahrheit und Methode, 2nd edition, J.C.B. Mohr, Tübingen, 1965; Paul Ricceur, De l’interprétation, Editions du Seuil, Paris, 1965. The present essay is an expanded and revised version of a contribution to a symposium on ‘Phenomenology and Hermeneutics’ held at the Western Division Meeting of the American Philosophical Association in Chicago, April, 1975.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Edmund Husserl, Cartesian Meditations (trans. Dorian Cairns), Martinus Nijhoff, The Hague, 1960, p. 10.Google Scholar
  3. 5.
    Martin Heidegger, Being and Time (trans. John Macquarrie and Edward Robinson), Harper and Row, New York, 1962, p. H. 150. (Pages preceded by ‘H.’ refer to the original German pagination in the margins).Google Scholar
  4. 13.
    G.W.F. Hegel, Phänomenologie des Geistes (ed. J. Hoffmeister), Felix Meiner, Hamburg, 1952, p. 65.Google Scholar
  5. 14.
    Paul Ricceur, ‘Phenomenology and Hermeneutics’, Nous, 9, March, 1975, p. 88.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, Dordrecht 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Carr
    • 1
  1. 1.The University of OttawaCanada

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