L'interprétation Essay

3130 words - 13 pages

L’interprétation

Les enjeux de la notion – une première définition

Interpréter, c’est remonter d’un signe à sa signification ou, plus largement encore, c’est tâcher de rendre compréhensible, saisissable par la pensée, des objets, des faits et des problèmes qui se présentent comme complexes, énigmatiques, évanescents, vastes, etc. Mais il faut remarquer que les théorèmes mathématiques et les faits de la nature, bien qu’en certaines circonstances on puisse dire qu’ils sont interprétés, sont soumis le plus souvent à des procédés non interprétatifs : les théorèmes mathématiques font l’objet de démonstration, les faits naturels font l’objet d’explication en vertu d’une application des lois ...view middle of the document...

Nous débuterons ce cours en exposant les conceptions de l’interprétation de l’Antiquité grecque au Moyen-Âge avant de nous concentrer sur le sens et la fonction de l’interprétation à l’époque moderne dans laquelle elle joue un rôle de premier ordre dans cette discipline qu’est l’herméneutique ainsi que dans les sciences humaines.

Bref aperçu sur l’histoire de l’interprétation

« Donc, repris-je, il est alors nécessaire, dans de tels cas, que l'âme soit dans l'embarras sur ce que ce sens peut bien signaler comme « le dur », si en effet il dit que la même chose est aussi molle ; et avec celui du léger et du lourd, qu'en est-il du léger et lourd, s'il signale aussi bien le lourd comme léger que le léger comme lourd ? Et en effet, dit-il, ces interprétations sont vraiment insolites pour l'âme et ont besoin d'une enquête. Vraisemblablement donc, repris-je, dans de telles situations, l'âme

tente tout d'abord, en faisant appel au raisonnement et à l'intelligence, d'examiner si chacune des choses qui lui sont dénoncées est une ou deux. » Platon, La République.

Le mot grec qui a été traduit en latin par interpretatio, puis en français par interprétation est le mot herméneia. Platon l’utilise notamment désigner chacune des multiples impressions (sensibles) opposées qui sont causées par certains objets, ces derniers se distinguant des objets saisissables dans leur unité par l’intelligence. Il n’y a donc d’interprétation qu’à partir du moment où il y a des interprétations. De plus, ce sont les sens qui interprètent les phénomènes, en donnent une traduction à l’âme. Les sens produisent des signes ou des signaux à destination de l’intelligence. En un autre sens, Platon évoque les poètes en tant qu’ils sont des interprètes des dieux ou encore ceux qui interprètent les oracles. L’art interprétatif se rapproche ici d’un art consistant à décoder des messages. Aristote quant à lui intitule l’un de ses traités De l’interprétation (Peri hermeneias). Selon lui, la langue est l’interprète des pensées en ce sens qu’elle les exprime, les présente à l’extérieur (le traité mentionné ci-dessus est également connu sous le nom de De la proposition). L’interprétation est expression, manifestation du logos.

Au Moyen-Âge, Thomas d’Aquin définit l’interprétation comme la découverte de la signification cachée d’un texte. Cette conception, qui prédomine au Moyen-Âge, est bien entendu liée à l’exégèse des Saintes Écritures, de la Bible. Se pose par exemple la question de savoir si les évènements décrits dans l’Ancien Testament, puis dans le Nouveau Testament, sont des images, s’ils sont susceptibles d’une interprétation allégorique. À la Renaissance (chez des auteurs tels que Ficin ou Pic de la Mirandole), l’interprétation de l’Écriture Sainte se complexifie en intégrant notamment des éléments de la kabbale, la signification allégorique étant alors privilégiée. Ce n’est qu’ensuite que s’impose la nécessité de la recherche d’un critère permettant de limiter la...

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