The article investigates the possibility of broadening Gadamer’s hermeneutical theory of the interpretation of a text also on the theory of the interpretation of human action. As a model for the development of hermeneutical inquiries, the author uses the theme of a understanding sociology. The successive parts of the article are aimed at analysing the conception of a understanding social action in Max Weber; at the subsequent critique and phenomenological development of this conception in the sociological theory of action of Alfred Schütz; and finally, and above all, at a differentiated inquiry into the problem of understanding the action of the other whose sociological treatment is, in the article, related to the more fundamental philosophical conception of understanding, as it was presented in Gadamer’s hermeneutics. The study, as a whole, shows not only that Gadamer’s concepts of horizon, the merging of horizons, and the hermeneutical situation may be meaningfully related to the question of the interpretation of human action, but also that new perspectives of inquiry may be opened up for sociological and philosophical theories of action.
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