Truth and Interpretation

By Luigi Pareyson
Translated by Robert T. Valgenti
Introduction by Robert T. Valgenti
Revised by Silvia Benso
Edited by Silvia Benso
Foreword by Gianni Vattimo

Subjects: Hermeneutics, Philosophy, Epistemology, Phenomenology
Series: SUNY series in Contemporary Italian Philosophy
Paperback : 9781438447506, 252 pages, July 2014
Hardcover : 9781438447490, 252 pages, August 2013

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Table of contents

Translator’s Note
Foreword by Gianni Vattimo
Translator’s Introduction: Luigi Pareyson’s Vindication of Philosophy by Robert T. Valgenti
Introduction: Expressive Thought and Revelatory Thought
Part I: Truth and History
1. Permanent Values and Historical Process
2. The Originarity of Interpretation
Part II: Truth and Ideology
3. Philosophy and Ideology
4. The Destiny of Ideology
Part III: Truth and Philosophy
5. The Necessity of Philosophy
6. Philosophy and Common Sense

A resolute defense of philosophy and hermeneutics against the threats of dogmatism and relativism.


Luigi Pareyson (1918–1991) was one of the most important Italian philosophers to emerge after World War II and stands shoulder to shoulder with fellow hermeneutic thinkers Hans-Georg Gadamer and Paul Ricoeur. The product of a well-developed theory of interpretation that stretches back to the late 1940s, his 1971 masterpiece Truth and Interpretation provides the historical impetus and theoretical framework for the questions of existence, art, and politics that would motivate his most famous students, Umberto Eco and Gianni Vattimo. In a time when the meaning of truth as an interpretation is challenged by the chaotic din of media on the one side and the violent force of absolute claims from science, religion, and political economy on the other, Pareyson's meditation on the value of thinking that is shaped by the traditions of philosophy and yet responds to contemporary demands remains timely and pressing more than forty years after its initial publication.

Robert T. Valgenti is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Lebanon Valley College. Silvia Benso is Professor of Philosophy at the Rochester Institute of Technology.