Dialectic, dialogue and conversation

Nicholas Davey (Lead / Corresponding author)

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


    This chapter contends that what characterises “the Gadamerian mind” is a specific way of thinking about and participating in language. This way of thinking is concerned not so much with different styles of philological or hermeneutical method but with pursuing the question of why it is that certain words in certain situations “speak” to us with such transformative intensity such that we are never quite the same again? What is innovative about the Gadamerian Mind is that it repudiates conventional subjectivist answers to the question and presents instead a poetics or language-economy, the interplays of which create the circumstances in and through which language does indeed speak to us and in so doing bring us to a point whereby we can find our own voice. The chapter explores the key elements within the language ontology characteristic of a Gadamerian framework of thinking. These include a discussion of the relation between language-being and linguistic consciousness. The concepts of dialogue, dialectic and conversation bring out different aspects of their relation. The chapter culminates in a discussion of “the living word” which offers a strikingly illuminative account of how it is that certain words do indeed speak to us in a transformative fashion.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationThe Gadamerian Mind
    EditorsTheodor George, Gert-Jan van der Heiden
    Place of PublicationLondon
    Number of pages17
    ISBN (Print)9780367194628
    Publication statusPublished - 25 Aug 2021


    • Language
    • Dialectic
    • Dialogue
    • Speculative Understanding
    • Language-world
    • Linguistic consciousness
    • language-ontology
    • conversation
    • representation
    • presentation
    • apophantic
    • apophatic
    • subject-matter


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