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Dead Questions and Vicarious Understandings: Questioning Gadamer's Genealogy

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Gadamer's Truth and Method emphasises the priority of engagement with questions in the process of interpretation; however, there are passages which appear dismissive of concerns with 'dead' scientific and philosophical questions. Here I argue that Gadamer's work is nevertheless an important resource for the historical study of the genesis and dissolution of questions. This type of study can overcome the divide between internal history of contents and external history of contexts. In both philosophy and the sciences, reflection on the genealogy of questions is, I suggest, crucial for our critical awareness of current methods and agendas.

Affiliations: 1: Department of History and Philosophy of Science, Cambridge University, Cambridge, UK


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