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Journal cover: International Journal of Social Economics

International Journal of Social Economics

ISSN: 0306-8293

Online from: 1974

Subject Area: Economics

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The hermeneutic and dialectic of community in development

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Title:The hermeneutic and dialectic of community in development
Author(s):Paul Kidder, (Department of Philosophy, Seattle University, Seattle, Washington, USA)
Citation:Paul Kidder, (1997) "The hermeneutic and dialectic of community in development", International Journal of Social Economics, Vol. 24 Iss: 11, pp.1191 - 1202
Keywords:Development, Ethics, Hermeneutics, Philosophy
Article type:Research paper
DOI:10.1108/03068299710193561 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:MCB UP Ltd
Abstract:Discusses the implications of two traditional philosophical notions - hermeneutic and dialectic - for contemporary theory and practice in the field of social and economic development. States that hermeneutic and dialectic are forms of inquiry and discourse dedicated to grasping cultural meaning from within, but also to finding resources criticism and reform within that understood universe of cultural meaning. Emphasizing H.-G. Gadamer’s work on philosophical hermeneutics, shows how the appropriation of one’s own horizon of assumptions is essential to the task of listening to and interpreting unfamiliar cultural horizons. Emphasizing the Socratic, dialogical conception of dialectic, shows how risking opinions through mutual inquiry can be a more fruitful form of cultural critique than the more confrontational rhetorical models of debate. Concludes that these collaborative qualities of hermeneutic and dialectic are especially relevant to varieties of development theory that emphasize ethics, community development, and the need to involve all participants in the task of defining the aims of development.

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