© Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2008 DOI: 10.1163/156916408X286996 Research in Phenomenology 38 (2008) 247–269 www.brill.nl/rp R e s e a r c h i n P h e n o m e n o l o g y Gadamerian Hermeneutics and Irony: Between Strauss and Derrida Robert J. Dostal Bryn Mawr College Abstract Against the background of Gadamer’s hermeneutics of trust, for which the primary concern of the hermeneutical enterprise is the matter under discussion, the Sache , this essay raises the ques- tion of Gadamer’s treatment of irony. Gadamer and Gadamerians have criticized the hermeneu- tics of suspicion—a hermeneutics that always looks under the surface of what is said to see what is hidden. Th is would seem to make irony a problematic aspect of texts and discourse for a Gada- merian hermeneutics. Nowhere in Gadamer’s corpus can we ﬁnd an extensive discussion of irony, but Gadamer does raise the question of irony in a provocative way in several important junctures. Th is essay contrasts Gadamer’s treatment of irony to that of Leo Strauss and Jacques Derrida. It explores why for Gadamer irony does not call for a hermeneutics of suspicion. Keywords hermeneutics, irony, Gadamer, Strauss, Derrida,
Research in Phenomenology – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2008
Keywords: HERMENEUTICS; STRAUSS; GADAMER; INTERPRETATION; IRONY; DERRIDA
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