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  • In: Encyclopedia of Identity
  • Edited by: Ronald L. Jackson II & Michael A. Hogg
  • Subject:Self & Identity, Identity, Self & Identity

In its most traditional usage, the word hermeneutics refers to methods for attempting to systematically interpret and understand texts, mainly religious ones. It employs ongoing part-to-whole and whole-to-part analyses, engaging in what is commonly called the hermeneutic circle, meaning that we are always already embedded within what we try to understand, that interpretation is always already under way and ongoing, and that meaning is to be found in the movement from part to whole and back again. ...

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