Abstract and Keywords
Hermeneutics is the act of interpretation that inquires into the ways in which meaning is formed in text and is also more broadly a philosophical inquiry into human existence. Hermeneutics raises questions about the relation of faith to rationality, about the significance of texts, and about the ways in which signs refer to what they signify. Hermeneutics therefore raises questions about meaning and truth that are directly relevant to religions and highly pertinent in contemporary culture. Hermeneutics can be understood to have three main divisions: theological hermeneutics interprets texts held to be sacred by tradition; historical-critical hermeneutics developed in the context of the critical, philological examination of Classical texts and was then applied to Christian scriptures; and philosophical hermeneutics is concerned with the interpretation not only of text but of existence, as we see in the work of Schleiermacher, Gadamer, Ricoeur, and feminist philosophers.
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