Philosophy and Practice in Translational Hermeneutics

2018

Philosophy and Practice in Translational Hermeneutics

Radegundis Stolze
Pages 77-99

Dimensionen der Subjektivitat beim Ubersetzen

The central idea of traditional hermeneutics is that a translator only transfers what he or she interprets as the text’s message. Modern philosophical hermeneutics, for its part, deals critically with what is conditioning the interpreter’s understanding of a text. In this regard, the focus is on the particular knowledge-base that constitutes the background of subjective understanding. In order to clarify the modern hermeneutical approach to translation, this essay discusses various dimensions of subjectivity. At issue, firstly, is the cognitive subject which takes charge of the translator’s reaching out into foreign worlds and specialist domains. Secondly, there is the existential subject: all translators live in a society and can learn about other modes of interpretation and rhetorical formulation, especially insofar as there is the possibility of being influenced by a given tradition. Thirdly, there is an individual subject informed by feelings and experiences which condition the translator’s linguistic creativity and motivate a certain deconstructionist reaction to texts. All three areas, this essay will argue, are constantly interlinked in understanding, translation, and writing.