Questionner une quasi-absence : le témoignage dans Temps et récit


Questioning a Quasi-absence: the Testimony in Time and Narrative

The starting point of this article is a surprising finding about Ricœur’s Time and Narrative. This impressive trilogy – essentially dedicated to the narrative and its capacity to refigure time, often defined as a poetics of history, laying the basis of the theory of narrative identity – barely considers the phenomenon of the testimony, generally understood as someone’s narration about a past event. But suspecting a paradoxical lacuna in the problematic of Time and Narrative doesn’t exempt us from searching its ‘reasons’. Thus, in the first part of this paper, we’ll take into account, from a genealogical point of view, Ricœur’s article on the hermeneutics of the testimony, written few years before his trilogy. In the second part, the questioning of what we’ve called the quasi-absence of the testimony in Time and Narrative will involve keen analysis of the theories concerning the reality of the past determined according to different criteria: proximity / observation versus pertinence / possibility.

Keywords: Ricœur, Testimony, Reality of the Past, Trace, Representation of the Past

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