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Hans-Georg Gadamer on Environment - Dictionary of Arguments

I 447
Environment/World/Gadamer: To have the world means: to relate to the world. However, to behave towards the world requires to keep oneself free from the encounter with the world to such an extent that one can put it before oneself as it is. This ability is having-world and having-language in one.
The concept of the world thus stands in contrast to the concept of the environment, which belongs to all living beings in the world.
The environment is the "milieu" in which one lives, and the influence of the environment on one's character and way of life is what makes up the meaning of the environment. The human is not independent of the particular aspect the world shows him or her. Thus, the concept of environment is originally a social concept that wants to express the dependence of the individual on the social world, i.e. it is only related to people. In a broad sense, however, this concept of environment can be applied to all living things to summarize the conditions on which their existence depends. Precisely with this, however, it becomes clear that the human, unlike all other living beings, has "world", provided that these do not have a relationship to the world in the same sense, but are, as it were, embedded in their environment. The extension of the concept of environment to all living things has thus in truth changed its meaning.
I 448
The truth is that humans, because they have always been able to rise above their respective accidental environment and because their speech brings the world to speech, are from the outset open to the variety of the exercise of their faculty of speech. Here, elevation above the environment has a humane and that means a linguistic sense from the outset.
Animals can leave their environment and migrate all over the world without breaking their environmental bonds. On the other hand, elevation above the environment is elevation to the world for humans and does not mean leaving the environment, but rather a different attitude towards it, a free, distanced behaviour, the execution of which is always a linguistic one. >Animal Language/Gadamer.


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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Gadamer I
Hans-Georg Gadamer
Wahrheit und Methode. Grundzüge einer philosophischen Hermeneutik 7. durchgesehene Auflage Tübingen 1960/2010

Gadamer II
H. G. Gadamer
The Relevance of the Beautiful, London 1986
German Edition:
Die Aktualität des Schönen: Kunst als Spiel, Symbol und Fest Stuttgart 1977


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