Hermeneutics appears now to be something more than a passing fashion of continental theory. Like rhetoric, hermeneutics has a great and venerable provenance and a genuinely interdisciplinary breadth. But unlike rhetoric, its definition is contested and its standing controversial. It is considered a generic designation for interpretive criticism, a humanist philosophy that challenges the primacy of scientific method. It is an ontology of linguistic being, or a philosophy in which human experience becomes defined in language use. As such, hermeneutics is also a corollary to the idea of rhetorical agency, the idea that communicators act with intention. In its contemporary guise, it gained international notoriety in the 1960s after the publication of Hans-Georg Gadamer’s Truth and Method and has continued to propagate in disciplines as various as theology, architecture, organizational communication, and physics. Although remaining strongly associated with Gadamer, a longtime student of philosopher Martin Heidegger, it has been further shaped and extended by such intellectual luminaries as Paul Ricoeur and Jürgen Habermas.

Littlejohn, Stephen W and Karen A.Floss. (2009). Encyclopedia of Communication Theory.USA:SAGE.654

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Gayes Mahestu
Edwina Ayu Kustiawan