Paul Ricoeur (Transl. by: Anna Borisenkova 1 ; Translation ed. by: Alexander Filippov 1)
  • 1 National Research University Higher School of Economics, 20 Myasnitskaya Str., Moscow, 101000, Russian Federation

The Model of the Text: Meaningful Action Considered as a Text

2008, vol. 7, No. 1, pp. 25–43 [issue contents]
In his classic article, Paul Ricœur aims to test a hypothesis that the human sciences may be considered as hermeneutical, meaning hermeneutics as a set of rules required for the interpretation of the written documents of our culture. He verifies his hypothesis by discovering that a meaningful action displays some of the features constitutive of a text. By stating this, Ricœur attempts to reinterpret the concept of social action defined by Max Weber as meaningfully oriented behavior. Ricœur replaces the predicate ‘‘meaningfully oriented’’ by what he calls ‘‘readibility-characters’’ derived from the preceding theory of the text. He delineates the traits of a meaningful action that correspond to the characteristics of the text: the autonomization of action, relevance and importance, human action as an ‘‘open work’’. In the second part of the article Ricœur explains the famous dialectic between the methodological procedures of explanation and interpretation (erklären and verstehen). Analogy between structural analysis of texts and analysis of social action supports Ricœur‘s famous thesis that the procedure of understanding and explanation do not exclude but complement each other, and thus constitute the procedure of interpretation.
Citation: Ricoeur Paul (2008) Model' teksta: osmyslennoe deystvie kak tekst [The Model of the Text: Meaningful Action Considered as a Text] The Russian Sociological Review, 1, pp. 25-43 (in Russian)
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