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Interreligious Hermeneutics and the Pursuit of Truth


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Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Reclaiming the Religions A Plea for Content A Plea for Contention The Hermeneutical Straddle Chapter 2: Mixed Transmission: Three Core Insights of Hermeneutics Hybrid Experience Communal Stability Epistemic Alienation Chapter 3: Agents of Comprehension What is Dialogue? What is Understanding? Agency and critical Reason Chapter 4: The Worry of Incommensurability The Gammar of a Life Three Orders of Difference Phronesis: A Solution Based in Contingency From Genuine Commensuration to Genuine Controversy Chapter 5: Truth Beyond the Pale Mysteriosophy Internalism Critical Realism Reticent Realism Fear of Ontological Commitment Chapter 6: Reconstructing Plurality Hermeneutics as Meta-narrative The Disruption of Differance The Logical Status of Fallibilist Hermeneutics A Way Forward: Constructive Postmodernism Dialogue and Homogeneity The Hermeneutic Response to Deconstruction Conclusion: Reality, Religions, and Discursive Justice

About the Author

J. R. Hustwit is assistant professor and chair of the Religion and Philosophy Department at Methodist University.


Surely, when we believe something, we believe it to be true, yet the truth claims of religion are in crisis today. In Interreligious Hermeneutics and the Pursuit of Truth, Jeremy Hustwit deftly charts a path between those who wish to dispense with truth altogether and those who are all too sure that they alone possess the final truth. Neither too skeptical nor too restrictive, Hustwitt offers a powerful platform for the new multi-faith dialogue. After all, how can the religions engage one another if they cannot even acknowledge where their beliefs differ? -- Philip Clayton, Ingraham Professor of Theology, Claremont School of Theology, Author of In Quest of Freedom: The Emergence of Spirit in the Natural World
In Interreligious Hermeneutics and the Pursuit of Truth, J. R. Hustwit proves to be a trustworthy guide to the tangled landscape of religious pluralism with its hermeneutical dead ends and epistemological bogs. His well-argued endorsement of a faillibilist hermeneutics in conjunction with a commonsense understanding of truth is sorely needed by interpreters of apparent conflict among religious beliefs. Hustwit leaves us not with a solution to the problem of religious pluralism, but with a meaningful, constructive, critical way forward. -- Wesley J. Wildman, Boston University
Hustwit takes us through a history of hermeneutic philosophy that is truly a tour de force. Impeccable and insightful discussions of [philosophers] . . . are just a few of the choicest highlights. . . .The book is as refreshing as it is rewarding. . . .for those who want not merely to rehash what others have already had to say about the relationship between hermeneutics and philosophy, but for those who actually want to do some thinking of their own by putting those results to work. . . .Hustwit gets us thinking, and that, especially in a context as sometimes fraught with posturing and hand-waving as this, is no small thing. * Review of Metaphysics *
J. R. Hustwit offers a perfectly pitched articulation and defense of a "reticent" realistic hermeneutical method that facilitates interreligious dialogue. Beyond seeking to understand commonalities and differences, he urges interfaith dialogue to engage truth questions. His review of European hermeneutics from Kant to the present is detailed and profound without being tortured. This is the best presentation of the Claremont Process School of hermeneutics to date, bringing its promotion of "constructive" (as opposed to "deconstructive") postmodernism into clear conversation with the larger hermeneutical discussion. What a delight it is to find philosophical hermeneutics from the hands of someone who actually knows a lot about many religions! -- Robert Cummings Neville, professor of Philosophy, Religion, and Theology, Boston University and author of Realism in Religion and Religion in Late Modern

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