Hermeneutics: A Very Short Introduction

OUP Oxford
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Hermeneutics is the branch of knowledge that deals with interpretation, a behaviour that is intrinsic to our daily lives. As humans, we decipher the meaning of newspaper articles, books, legal matters, religious texts, political speeches, emails, and even dinner conversations every day . But how is knowledge mediated through these forms? What constitutes the process of interpretation? And how do we draw meaning from the world around us so that we might understand our position in it? In this Very Short Introduction Jens Zimmermann traces the history of hermeneutic theory, setting out its key elements, and demonstrating how they can be applied to a broad range of disciplines: theology; literature; law; and natural and social sciences. Demonstrating the longstanding and wide-ranging necessity of interpretation, Zimmermann reveals its significance in our current social and political landscape. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
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About the author

Jens Zimmermann is Professor of Humanities and Canada Research Chair for Interpretation, Religion and Culture at Trinity Western University, Canada. As well as speaking on the importance of hermeneutics and religion to lay audiences and graduate students, he has published books on theological hermeneutics in both English and German and has written articles on hermeneutics in academic journals. He is author of Politics and the Religious Imagination (Routledge, 2010) and Humanism and Religion (OUP, 2012).
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Additional Information

Publisher
OUP Oxford
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Published on
Oct 22, 2015
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Pages
144
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ISBN
9780191508547
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Language
English
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Genres
Philosophy / Epistemology
Philosophy / Logic
Philosophy / Mind & Body
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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Jens Zimmermann
Endorsements: "This book is a careful, historical demonstration of the way in which hermeneutics was secularized yet continues to borrow on the capital of Christian theology. By exposing the problems inherent in secular hermeneutics and correcting the histories of philosophical hermeneutics on record, Zimmerman points a way forward beyond secular hermeneutics. This is a bold project that should be read not only by theologians but, more especially, by those philosophers working in the wake of Heidegger, Gadamer, Derrida, and Levinas. This book is an excellent addition to any course in philosophical hermeneutics." -- James K. A. Smith, author of The Fall of Interpretation "In Recovering Theological Hermeneutics, Zimmerman offers a compelling argument for the claim that hermeneutics must be theological if it is to be truly hermeneutical. Through a fair and careful reading of premodern and postmodern hermeneutical theorists, he shows their true kinship. Building appreciatively (though not uncritically) upon insights of Gadamer, Levinas, and Derrida, Zimmerman draws from Bonhoeffer and Balthasar to construct an incarnational hermeneutic. Zimmerman provides us with a deeply Christian view of human understanding--one that results in nether hermeneutical triumphalism nor hermeneutical despair but affirms understanding as relational, historical, and ultimately based on God's revelation." --Bruce Ellis Benson, author of Graven Ideologies: Nietzsche, Derrida, and Marion on Modern Idolatry "Recovering Theological Hermeneutics is an important contribution to hermeneutics. Zimmerman provides not only a detailed and convincing historical analysis but also an outline of theological hermeneutics that is ethical, incarnational, and thus, in the best sense of the word, truly evangelical. Far from naively idealizing a premodern point of view, Zimmerman convincingly works through modern and postmodern thought. In so doing, he shows the often-overlooked potential of the premodern Christian tradition without ignoring its difficulties and shortcomings--a challenge to both modern and postmodern theology and, indeed, philosophy." --Holder Zaborowsky, Albert-Ludwig University of Freiburg About the Contributor(s): Jens Zimmermann holds a Canada Research Chair at Trinity Western University. He is coauthor of The Passionate Intellect (2006), and coeditor of Being Human, Becoming Human: Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Social Thought (2010).
Epicurus
The brilliant writings of a highly influential Greek philosopher, with a foreword by Daniel Klein, author of Travels with Epicurus

The teachings of Epicurus—about life and death, religion and science, physical sensation, happiness, morality, and friendship—attracted legions of adherents throughout the ancient Mediterranean world and deeply influenced later European thought. Though Epicurus faced hostile opposition for centuries after his death, he counts among his many admirers Thomas Hobbes, Thomas Jefferson, Karl Marx, and Isaac Newton. This volume includes all of his extant writings—his letters, doctrines, and Vatican sayings—alongside parallel passages from the greatest exponent of his philosophy, Lucretius, extracts from Diogenes Laertius' Life of Epicurus, a lucid introductory essay about Epicurean philosophy, and a foreword by Daniel Klein, author of Travels with Epicurus and coauthor of the New York Times bestseller Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar.

For more than sixty-five years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,500 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
Jens Zimmermann
Since its inception in ancient Greco-Roman culture, the main goal of humanism has been moral formation through education for the attainment of true humanity. Literature and religion have always played a central role in humanistic learning, especially in the Christian humanism that has deeply shaped Western ideals of higher education. Does Christian humanism remain important today? What does Christian humanism have to contribute to the idea of moral formation in contemporary Western culture that has been characterized by many as “a secular age”? This book addresses these questions by examining two prominent Christian humanists: the twentieth-century theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer and the contemporary American writer Marilynne Robinson. In this volume, a group of international scholars, from a variety of disciplines, bring Bonhoeffer and Robinson into conversation with current moral and ethical issues, from the residential school system to our increasingly consumerist and technology-obsessed society. The contributors demonstrate the profound affirmation of human dignity and freedom that characterize the humanism of both Bonhoeffer and Robinson, highlighting their import as resources for the relation of religion, culture and ethics. The essays in this book thus remind us that religious faith will remain relevant as we search for moral consensus in modern, post-Christian societies. The volume also features a new interview with Robinson that reveals her own religious humanism and her appreciation for Bonhoeffer’s theology.

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