Cognition and Comprehension in Translational Hermeneutics
Grenzen und Möglichkeiten der (paepckeschen) Hermeneutik
After the author explicates how his academic relationship to Paepcke began in the 1970s, he proceeds to discuss critically the latter’s reflections on language and translation. Latent contradictions in Paepcke’s conceptual framework and in his understanding of the relationship between theory and practice are brought to the fore. This conceptual tension shows that Paepcke’s understanding of and approach to dealing with texts is problematic. Using concrete examples, the author demonstrates that Paepcke did not rely on the text as the criterion for constituting meaning. Rather Paepcke relied on historically mediated conceptual constructs which were given the status of authoritative units of sense, and these units guided Paepcke in his process of establishing the meaning of the whole. The reason for this can be found in unreflected preliminary decisions that are seen as “a priori evidence.” This also explains why Paepcke’s real achievement lies in the contrastive analysis of comprehensive concepts – of traditionally rich concepts developed over the course of time (human orientation) as well as in rationalized contemporary language (functional orientation).