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4. It is All Signs: Reading Poststructuralism

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Chapter Summary

Immanent reading can take many forms. Sociological structuralism, was a part of the poststructuralist movement, especially in France. At first, the genesis and existence of meanings were located in the sphere of the society. Gradually, however, a new understanding of language systems took over, and meanings were limited to intrasystemic functions. When metaphysics is excluded from the picture, it is believed that people speak of language, not reality. Nominalistic poststructuralism became an influential movement that also changed approaches to theology. Even though Heikki Rӓisӓnen has written most of his books focusing on historical criticism and aiming at some kind of historical reconstruction, his writings also have features that reflect this linguistic turn. His hermeneutics depend on ideas that sometimes veer closely to the theses of the poststructuralist movement. This chapter investigates how he succeeds in combining two approaches that differ so essentially from each other.

Keywords: France; Heikki Rӓisӓnen; poststructuralism; sociological structuralism; theology



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