Text - Reader - Author: Towards a Theory of Exegesis: Some European Viewpoints

  • Helmut Utzschneider


The starting point of the article is a triple crisis of the traditional historical exegesis of the OT. Proposed is a "theory of exegesis" which offers a basis for transformations of traditional questions and methods and which offers "interfaces" for both, the integration of recent trends of literary sciences and the dialog with non-academic, contextual approaches. The (biblical) text is basically understood as an "aesthetic subject" in order to stress that the interrelation between the text and its readers proceeds from the productive encounter between both. As "co-ordinates" of the theory function U. Eco's three "intentions of interpretation" and their relations: the "intentio operis" which opens the perspective on descriptive text theories, the "intentio lectoris" which integrates "aesthetics of reception" and the "intentio auctoris" which offers the link to the traditional historical-critical exegesis.