Summary: Questioning Keats: An Introduction to Applied Hermeneutics presents a critique of conventional textual interpretation, arguing that what it terms standard academic discourse objectifies the meaning of the text’s words in such a manner that their richness is obscured. Since the views of language and interpretation Questioning Keats proposes are analogous in many ways to those of Martin Heidegger and his pupil Hans-Georg Gadamer, it devotes five chapters to laying out the ideas of these philosophers that are necessary to understand the concept of applied hermeneutics it is forwarding. Heidegger’s groundbreaking notion that Being is time underlies the idea of hermeneutic truth, perhaps the most important of the philosophical ideas dealt with in this text. Hermeneutic truth is an approach that challenges the referential, empirical ideas of truth most often met with in academic discussions. It holds that human phenomena cannot be subsumed by empirical propositions but must be treated as fully implicated in time, as Heidegger’s showing how it is co-terminous with Being implies.
Russell Weaver is an Associate Professor of English at Ashland University. Questioning Keats: An Introduction to Applied Hermeneutics is his first publication. He received his M.A. and Ph.D. in English from the University of Chicago and his B.A. in English from Tulane University.