Session 2: Gadamer’s Hermeneutics: Bias, Understanding, and Expanding Horizons

Location: OCHS Library
Speaker: Dr Jessica Frazier
Date: May 23, 2014
Time: 2:00pm to 3:00pm

Gadamer saw culture, religion, and art as ‘living texts’ that integrate our life experience into a meaningful worldview that allows us to think, act, and create. But no worldview is ever static or finished; in ‘understanding’ we use bias (that of ourselves and others) as the raw material from which a new worldview is created. In this respect Gadamer shares much with Aristotelian and later Vitalist thinkers. But Gadamer also affirms that texts can act poetically as ‘angels’, as he puts it in his studies of Rilke and Paul Celan, gesturing toward the transcendence of that which cannot be encompassed in human thought.