Qualifying Exams - Philosophical Ethics

From BrothersBrothers


Discuss the concerns that motivated Gadamer in Truth and Method to radically depart from the earlier traditions in the field of hermeneutics, and instead to explore the problem of understanding from the perspective of practical philosophy.


  1. Gadamer dedicates an entire chapter of Truth and Method to the thought of earlier scholars working in the area of philosophical hermeneutics. In particular, he addresses the work of Schleiermacher, Dilthey, and Droysen.
  2. In this chapter he


Discuss the influence of Aristotle and Aristotelian ethics on Gadamer’s thought. Address in particular the relationship between Aristotle’s virtue of practical rationality and Gadamer’s account of practical philosophy.

Analyze Gadamer’s account of the relationship between tradition and effective history (Wirkungsgeschichte), and the relationship of these to his account of hermeneutic understanding.


Write an essay in which you critically apply Gadamer’s insights to a particular case in medical or clinical ethics.


Construct a syllabus and bibliography for a course you would be prepared to facilitate on Hermaneutics and Practical Ethics.