The Epistemology of Reading and Interpretation


English | ISBN: 1316516792 | 2021 | 270 pages | PDF | 1130 KB

Reading and textual interpretation are ordinary human activities, performed inside as well as outside academia, but precisely how they function as unique sources of knowledge is not well understood. In this book, René van Woudenberg explores the nature of reading and how it is distinct from perception and (attending to) testimony, which are two widely acknowledged knowledge sources. After distinguishing seven accounts of interpretation, van Woudenberg discusses the question of whether all reading inevitably involves interpretation, and shows that although reading and interpretation often go together, they are distinct activities. He goes on to argue that both reading and interpretation can be paths to realistically conceived truth, and explains the conditions under which we are justified in believing that they do indeed lead us to the truth. Along the way, he offers clear and novel analyses of reading, meaning, interpretation, and interpretative knowledge.
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