Hermeneutics and Critical Theory in Ethics and Politics
Founded in the early nineteenth century by F. D. E. Schleiermacher, modern hermeneutics was designed as a means for interpreting texts in a way that emphasized the historical context of the interpretation. Since the 1960s, however, hermeneutics has been increasingly generalized as a method for inquiring into the world of human affairs. These twelve essays, written by philosophers, examine the usefulness, objectivity, and range of applicability of interpretive methods in ethics and politics, with the goal of isolating the role of methodology to allow debate to focus on substantive conflicts.
Contents: Part 1, Ethics. In the Shadow of Aristotle and Hegel: Communicative Ethics and Current Controversies in Practical Philosophy, Seyla Benhabib. Justice and Solidarity: On the Discussion Concerning "Stage 6", Jürgen Habermas. The Contingent Person and the Existential Choice, Agnes Heller. MacIntyre, Habermas, and Philosophical Ethics, Michael Kelly. Beyond Good-Evil: A Plea for a Hermeneutic Ethics, Adi Ophir. Part 2, Politics. Rational Reconstruction and Social Criticism: Habermas's Model of Interpretive Social Science, Kenneth Baynes. On the Conception of the Common Interest: Between Procedure and Substance, Carol Gould. The Politics of the Ineffable: Derrida's Deconstructionism, Thomas McCarthy. Kant and the Interpretation of Nature and History, Rudolf Makkreel. A Critique of Philosophical Conversation, Michael Walzer. Rawls, Habermas, and Real Talk: A Reply to Walzer, Georgia Warnke. Social Interpretation and Political Theory: Walzer and His Critics, Georgia Warnke. Models of Freedom in the Modem World, Albrecht Wellmer.
The essays in Hermeneutics and Critical Theory in Ethics and Politics originally appeared in Philosophical Forum.
About the Author
Michael Kelly is Adjunct Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Columbia University, where he is also Managing Editor of the journal Philosophical Forum.