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Summary Søren Aabye Kierkegaard (1813-1855) is generally considered to be the father of existentialism. Kierkegaard’s father, a wealthy retired merchant, was a Pietist and hence encouraged his sons Peter Christian and Søren Aabye to study theology at the University of Copenhagen. Kierkegaard received the degree of Magister Artium in 1840, though by that time his interest has shifted from theology to philosophy. He had hoped to receive an academic position in philosophy, but those hopes were never realized. He was closely tied, however, to academic circles, and was, in fact, one of the leading intellectuals of what has come to be known as the Danish “Golden Age.” Kierkegaard was primarily a polemical writer whose works were often responses to the works of contemporaries such at Hans Lassen Martensen and Johann Ludvig Heiberg. He wrote on a broad range of topics from aesthetics to psychology and employed a variety of literary styles from the novel (e.g. Repetition) to more traditional academic treatises (e.g., The Concept of Anxiety). His mature interest was in delineating the relation between Christianity and philosophy with an emphasis on precisely what was involved both cognitively and practically in being Christian. Kierkegaard is thought by many to have coined the expression “leap of faith.” In fact, this expression comes from Lessing and is used by Kierkegaard only ironically.
Key works The two works most central to Kierkegaard’s thought are Philosophical Crumbs (Kierkegaard & Mooney 2009) and the Concluding Unscientific Postscript to the Philosophical Crumbs (Kierkegaard 2009), though his most famous work is undoubtedly Fear and Trembling (Kierkegaard 1986). Philosophical Crumbs introduces the distinction between what Kierkegaard’s pseudonym Johannes Climacus presents as the traditional philosophical account of the relation of the individual to the truth and the account of this relation given by Christianity. The Postscript looks in detail about what it means to become a Christian. Approximately half of Kierkegaard’s works, including those just mentioned, were published under pseudonyms. Among the works published under Kierkegaard’s own name, the most important are arguably Works of Love (Kierkegaard 1998), and Training in Christianity (Kierkegaard 2004).
Introductions Introductory articles: Michelle Kosch, "Kierkegaard" (Kosch 2015) and Piety, "Kierkegaard on Rationality" (Piety 1993). Book length introductory works: C. Stephen Evans’s Kierkegaard: An Introduction (Evans 2009); Alastair Hannay’s Kierkegaard (Hannay 1982); Gregor Malantschuk’s The Controversial Kierkegaard (Malantschuk 1980), and David F. Swenson’s Something About Kierkegaard (Swenson 1945).
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  1. The Problem of Despair: A Kierkegaardian Reading of the Book of Job.Richard Oxenberg - manuscript
    The Book of Job is often read as the Bible's response to theodicy's 'problem of evil.' As a resolution to the logical difficulties of this problem, however, it is singularly unsatisfying. Job's ethical protest against God is never addressed at the level of the ethical. But suggested in Job's final encounter with God is the possibility of a spiritual resolution beyond the ethical. In this paper I examine the Book of Job as a response to the spiritual problem of despair; (...)
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  2. Faith and Sacrifice in Fear and Trembling.Neelesh Pratap - manuscript
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  3. Bakhtin and the Kierkegaardian Revolution.Sergeiy Sandler - manuscript
    Søren Kierkegaard’s influence on the thought of Mikhail Bakhtin has received relatively little attention from Bakhtin scholars (and hardly any attention from Bakhtin scholars in the English-speaking world). Yet, as I argue in this paper, Kierkegaard was among the most important formative influences on Bakhtin's work. This influence is most evident in Bakhtin's early ethical philosophy, but remains highly relevant in later periods. Reading Bakhtin as a follower and developer of Kierkegaard's fundamental philosophical insights provides us with a key to (...)
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  4. The Concept of ‘Subject’ in Søren Kierkegaard’s Philosophy.Türker Armaner - unknown - Yeditepe'de Felsefe (Philosophy at Yeditepe) 2.
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  5. Irony as a Post-Romantic Possibility for Art: Kierkegaard's Reply to Hegel.James Crooks - unknown - Eidos: The Canadian Graduate Journal of Philosophy 3.
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  6. Kierkegaard and the Ground of Morality.Alison Assiter - forthcoming - Acta Kierkegaardiana.
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  7. A Kierkegaardian Anti-Luck Epistemology.Tim Black - forthcoming - Acta Analytica:1-13.
    We can address the issue of epistemic luck, the possibility that the world interferes with the activity of believing so as to keep that activity from achieving its aim, by rethinking the aim of that activity. So, if we give up truth, for example, as the aim of belief, and if we embrace a different aim—the aim of believing as my ideal self would have me believe—we can eliminate the possibility of luck and leave the world no room to interfere (...)
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  8. Marrying a Married Man: A Postscript.Monique Borgerhoff Mulder - forthcoming - Human Nature: A Critical Reader.
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  9. Ambiguous and Deeply Differentiated: Kierkegaard's Relations to Hegel1.Ame Gren - forthcoming - Kierkegaardiana.
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  10. Kierkegaard’s Journals and Notebooks, Volume 10, Journals NB31–NB36.Tom Grimwood - forthcoming - The European Legacy:1-3.
    The tenth volume of Bruce Kirmmse et al.’s monumentous task of translating Søren Kierkegaard’s journals and notebooks follows the same conventions as previous ones. Each of Kierkegaard’s journals i...
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  11. Paradigmatic Despair and the Quest for a Kierkegaard Anthropology.Alasdair Hannay - forthcoming - Kierkegaard Studies Yearbook 1:149-163.
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  12. What It Means to Be Immortal: Afterlife and Aesthetic Communication in Kierkegaard's Concluding Unscientific Postscript.Lasse Horne Kjældgaard - forthcoming - Kierkegaard Studies Yearbook.
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  13. Kant's and Kierkegaard's Conception of Ethics' In.Ulrich‘Der Kantianismus Kierkegaard’S. Knappe - forthcoming - Kierkegaard Studies Yearbook.
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  14. Either Kierkegaard/Or Nietzsche: Moral Philosophy in a New Key [Book Review].J. Lippitt - forthcoming - Ars Disputandi: The Online Journal for Philosophy of Religion.
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  15. Indirect Communication by Kierkegaard.Poul Lübcke - forthcoming - Rivista di Filosofia Neo-Scolastica.
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  16. The Quiet Lake and the Hidden Spring: Locating the Ground in Kierkegaard's Works of Love.G. P. Marcar - forthcoming - Studies in Christian Ethics:095394682110593.
    At the end of the prayer with which he begins Works of Love, Søren Kierkegaard notes that while ‘works of love’ might normally be viewed as a subset of worthwhile human endeavours or ‘works’, from heaven's perspective no work can be pleasing unless it is a work of love. From this arises the question—which Kierkegaard himself moves swiftly to address—of what distinguishes a work of ‘love’ from other, non-loving works? In this article, and with particular reference to Jacob Boehme, I (...)
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  17. JR Dúvida Antiga E Dúvida Moderna Segundo Kierkegaard.Maia Neto - forthcoming - Revista Latinoamericana de Filosofia.
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  18. Michael Weston, Kierkegaard and Modern Continental Philosophy.J. Ree - forthcoming - Radical Philosophy.
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  19. 'Peter Fenves,Chatter': Language and History in Kierkegaard.J. Ree - forthcoming - Radical Philosophy.
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  20. Soren Kierkegaard Newsletter No. 19.Aar Kierkegaard Seminar - forthcoming - Philosophy.
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  21. Form and Faith in Sheridan Hough's "Kierkegaard's Dancing Tax Collector". [REVIEW]Susanna Siegel - forthcoming - Syndicate Philosophy.
    I argue that in Sheridan Hough's book Kierkegaard's Dancing Tax Collector, the distinctive and novelistic literary form is not a playful, whimsical, or otherwise contingent feature, but a structure that's needed to convey the account of Kierkegaardian faith as practical in nature.
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  22. Soren Kierkegaard Literature 2002-2004 A Bibliography.Julia Watkin, Aage Jorgensen & Noel Stewart Adams - forthcoming - Kierkegaardiana.
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  23. Reason and Conversion in Kierkegaard and the German Idealists.Dan Watts - forthcoming - Tandf: British Journal for the History of Philosophy:1-5.
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  24. Kant and Kierkegaard on Faith.Marc Williams - forthcoming - Logos. Anales Del Seminario de Metafísica [Universidad Complutense de Madrid, España].
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  25. Kierkegaard on Self, Ethics, and Religion: Purity or Despair.Roe Fremstedal - 2022 - Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    Many of Søren Kierkegaard's most controversial and influential ideas are more relevant than ever to contemporary debates on ethics, philosophy of religion and selfhood. Kierkegaard develops an original argument according to which wholeheartedness requires both moral and religious commitment. In this book, Roe Fremstedal provides a compelling reconstruction of how Kierkegaard develops wholeheartedness in the context of his views on moral psychology, meta-ethics and the ethics of religious belief. He shows that Kierkegaard's influential account of despair, selfhood, ethics and religion (...)
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  26. Kierkegaard's the Sickness Unto Death: A Critical Guide.Jeffrey Hanson & Sharon Krishek (eds.) - 2022 - Cambridge University Press.
    The Sickness unto Death is commonly regarded as one of Kierkegaard's most important works – but also as one of his most difficult texts to understand. It is a meditation on Christian existentialist themes including sin, despair, religious faith and its redemptive power, and the relation and difference between physical and spiritual death. This volume of new essays guides readers through the philosophical and theological significance of the work, while clarifying the complicated ideas that Kierkegaard develops. Some of the essays (...)
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  27. A liberdade da consciência humana: o que Lutero e Kierkegaard tem a nos dizer?Heloisa Allgayer - 2021 - Griot : Revista de Filosofia 21 (3):298-318.
    In this article I try to bring to light the convergences and divergences between the German reformer Marthin Luther and the Danish philosopher Kierkegaard. For this purpose, the text was subdivided into four chapters so that it could be possible to bring the main ideas of the authors. The dialogue between Luther and Kierkegaard, where the author defends freedom of conscience as being a freedom from, as Luther does, since our freedom is only found when we love Christ, with a (...)
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  28. Reading Nausea Through Either / Or: An Aesthetic and Ethical Perspective.Zachary Altman - 2021 - Reed Journal of Existentialism 22:79-91.
    Literature, in particular philosophical literature, proves to be particularly challenging when read in isolation from the philosophy it comes from. Reading Sarte’s Nausea through Kierkegaard illuminates important themes of language, music, the ethical and aesthetic, and immediacy in both Nausea and Kierkegaard’s various pseudonymous works. The comparison here is extremely fruitful given the poetic and literary form of Kierkegaard’s work, especially against this particular work from Sartre. The themes in Nausea that are examined are interestingly not present in his other (...)
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  29. Kierkegaard on the Transformative Power of Art.Antony Aumann - 2021 - History of European Ideas 47 (3):429-442.
    ABSTRACT Kierkegaard seeks to inspire transformations. His aim is to get us to devote our lives to God or the Good rather than our own personal enjoyment – to abandon the aesthetic life in favour of the ethical or religious one. Drawing on Laurie Paul and Agnes Callard’s recent work, I maintain that two obstacles stand in Kierkegaard’s way. First, transformations involve adopting a new perspective on the world, one we cannot fully grasp ahead of time. Second, transformations also involve (...)
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  30. Estrategias de enmascaramiento en Kierkegaard y Kafka. Una breve reflexión sobre el papel del escritor en la moderna sociedad burguesa.Fabio Bartoli - 2021 - Areté. Revista de Filosofía 33 (2):223-244.
    Este artículo analiza las estrategias de enmascaramiento que Kierkegaard y Kafka adoptaron a lo largo de sus vidas. En primer lugar, se analizan algunos rasgos de la sociedad burguesa y del papel que el escritor tenía en ella. Sucesivamente, se describe la estrategia comunicativa de Kierkegaard y se identifican sus fines; después se hace la misma operación respecto de Kafka. Finalmente, se comparan las dos posturas y se subrayan diferencias y similitudes, para utilizar los resultados como insumos para una breve (...)
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  31. Kierkegaard on Imagination: Possibility, Hope, and the Imitation of Christ.Hjördis Becker-Lindenthal - 2021 - History of European Ideas 47 (3):484-499.
    ABSTRACT What happens to the imagination in the process of overturning despair and becoming an authentic self? Using the mystic concept of Entbildung as heuristics, the article re-examines the relation of the imagination and the will in Kierkegaard. Analysing the rarely compared texts Practice in Christianity and the first of the Ethical-Religious Essay, and paying close attention to the semantics of the image, the article argues that grace and imagination cooperate in the process of Entbildung, restoring the self’s receptivity for (...)
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  32. The Sublime in the Pedestrian: Figures of the Incognito in Fear and Trembling.Martijn Boven - 2021 - History of European Ideas 47 (3):500-513.
    This article demonstrates a novel conceptualization of sublimity: the sublime in the pedestrian. This pedestrian mode of sublimity is exemplified by the Biblical Abraham, the central figure of Kierkegaard’s pseudonymous Fear and Trembling. It is rooted in the analysis of one of the foundational stories of the three monotheistic religions: Abraham’s averted sacrifice of his son Isaac. The defining feature of this new, pedestrian mode of sublimity is that is remains hidden behind what I call a total incognito. It is (...)
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  33. In Search of “That Archimedean Point”: The Development of Selfhood in Kierkegaard’s Journal of Gilleleje.Nassim Bravo - 2021 - Kierkegaard Studies Yearbook 26 (1):3-24.
    This article offers a philosophical account of the so-called journal of Gilleleje. I would like to argue that in this text from 1835 one can trace the early philosophical musings of Kierkegaard on the existential question of the discovery of the self and the development of selfhood, one of the main motifs in the authorship of the Dane. Additionally, I discuss the literary trends of the 1830s in Golden Age Denmark, particularly the boom of the Danish short novel and Heiberg’s (...)
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  34. The search for the Self and the development of personhood in Søren Kierkegaard’s “Journal of Gilleleje ”.Nassim Bravo - 2021 - Veritas – Revista de Filosofia da Pucrs 48:57-78.
    Resumen En el siguiente artículo se ofrece un análisis del denominado “diario de Gilleleje” del filósofo danés Soren Kierkegaard. Se intenta argumentar que en este escrito temprano de 1835 y de un carácter eminentemente literario es posible encontrar las reflexiones filosóficas incipientes de un joven Kierkegaard acerca de la cuestión existencial del descubrimiento del propio Yo y la construcción de la personalidad, uno de los temas fundamentales en la obra del escritor danés. El desarrollo del texto culmina con la exposición (...)
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  35. Machine-Believers Learning Faiths & Knowledges: The New Gospel of Artificial Intelligence.Virgil W. Brower - 2021 - Internationales Jahrbuch Für Medienphilosophie 7 (1):97-121.
    One is occasionally reminded of Foucault's proclamation in a 1970 interview that "perhaps, one day this century will be known as Deleuzian." Less often is one compelled to update and restart with a supplementary counter-proclamation of the mathematician, David Lindley: "the twenty-first century would be a Bayesian era..." The verb tenses of both are conspicuous. // To critically attend to what is today often feared and demonized, but also revered, deployed, and commonly referred to as algorithm(s), one cannot avoid the (...)
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  36. Biopolitics & Probability: Agamben & Kierkegaard.Virgil W. Brower - 2021 - In Marcos Antonio Norris & Colby Dickinson (eds.), Agamben and the Existentialists. Edinburgh, UK: Edinburgh University Press. pp. 46-64.
    This project retraces activations of Kierkegaard in the development of polit­ical theology. It suggests alternative modes of states of exception attributed to him. Several Kierkegaardian themes open themselves to 'something like pure potential' in Agamben, namely: living death, animality, criminality, auto-constitution, modification, liturgy, love and certain articulations of improbabilities. (*Accompanying file includes only front matter, abstract, and endnotes*).
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  37. Existentialists or Mystics. Kierkegaard and Murdoch on Imagination and Fantasy in Ethical Life.Rob Compaijen - 2021 - History of European Ideas 47 (3):443-455.
    ABSTRACT In this paper I explore the role of imagination in ethical life. I do so by discussing the thought of Kierkegaard and Murdoch, both of whom stress the importance as well as the dangerousness of imagination for ethical life. Both distinguish between proper imagination and mere fantasy in dealing with the tension. Anti-Climacus’s views on imagination emphasize that the proper use of the imagination plays a vital role in realizing the fundamental ethical task of becoming ourselves, whereas fantasy only (...)
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  38. Love’s Forgiveness: Kierkegaard, Resentment, Humility and Hope: By John Lippitt, Oxford, UK, Oxford University Press, 2020, Xvi + 236 Pp., £51.00 ($63.00) (Hbk), ISBN: 978-0-19-886183-6.Christopher Cowley - 2021 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 29 (2):263-268.
    Forgiveness is a perennially rich topic in philosophy. It gathers together questions of ethics as well as philosophy of mind, action and emotion; it has analytic and Continental slants, and an impo...
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  39. Love’s Forgiveness: Kierkegaard, Resentment, Humility and Hope: By John Lippitt, Oxford, UK, Oxford University Press, 2020, Xvi + 236 Pp., £51.00 ($63.00) (Hbk), ISBN: 978-0-19-886183-6. [REVIEW]Christopher Cowley - 2021 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 29 (2):263-268.
    Forgiveness is a perennially rich topic in philosophy. It gathers together questions of ethics as well as philosophy of mind, action and emotion; it has analytic and Continental slants, and an impo...
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  40. What is Worldly Logic and Why Might It Lead to Suicide? Kierkegaard, Wittgenstein, and the Critique of Logic.Charles Djordjevic - 2021 - Kierkegaard Studies Yearbook 26 (1):459-487.
    In contemporary philosophy, there is a growing interest in how Søren Kierkegaard’s metaphilosophy and philosophical methodology may have influenced Ludwig Wittgenstein. This paper contributes to this discussion by arguing that each shares and critiques a particular conception of logic that I term “worldly logic.” Roughly, “worldly logic” contends logic and metaphysics are intimately interconnected. It further argues that reading Kierkegaard’s brief thoughts on logic, in the Climacus texts, through the lens of the later Wittgenstein, helps to clarify the nature of (...)
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  41. Revolutionary Neighbor-Love: Kierkegaard, Marx, and Social Reform.Richard Eva & C. Stephen Evans - 2021 - International Journal on Humanistic Ideology 11 (1):199-218.
    In this paper we compare Kierkegaard’s and Marx’s views on social reform. Then we argue that Kierkegaard’s own reasoning is consistent with the expression of neighbor-love through collective action, i.e. social reform. However, Kierkegaard’s approach to social reform would be vastly different than Marx’s. We end by reviewing several questions that Kierkegaardian social reformers would ask themselves. Our hope is that this exploration will provide helpful insights into how those who genuinely love their neighbors ought to seek the common good (...)
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  42. KIERKEGAARD E A TEORIA DAS CATEGORIAS: O ESTADO DA QUESTÃO E ALGUNS PROBLEMAS EM ABERTO.Gabriel Ferreira - 2021 - São Paulo, SP, Brasil: Liberars.
    Este capítulo versa sobre a relação de Kierkegaard com um dos problemas filo- sóficos centrais da ontologia e epistemologia, i.e., o problema das categorias. O texto te- mos um tríplice objetivo: 1) explicitar que Kierkegaard se envolveu com o problema das categorias; 2) identificar o estado da questão dessa relação por meio de uma recensão da literatura; e 3) apontar os problemas ainda em aberto e o que está indeterminado dessa relação Kierkegaard-Problema das categorias a partir desses comentadores.
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  43. The Struggle is Real: An Exploration of 19th Century Notions of Striving, Dialectic, and General Unrest.Dustin Gray - 2021 - Dialogue: Journal of Phi Sigma Tau 63 (2-3):160-7.
    In the comprehension of many 19th century European philosophers, there seems ever present in much of the work, a shared notion of struggle. This notion seems mainly to arise within the confines of human consciousness. The notion of struggle is in fact pervasive in contemporary thought as well, and could simply be inherent to human nature. However, I will maintain specific focus on the notion of struggle as brought to light by a sampling of works by three relevant 19th century (...)
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  44. Review of Contemporary With Christ: Kierkegaard and Second-Personal Spirituality. [REVIEW]Adam Green - 2021 - Journal of Analytic Theology 9:725-730.
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  45. The Exception of Transcendence: The Political Theology of Kierkegaard and Das.Mike Grimshaw - 2021 - Comparative and Continental Philosophy 13 (2):188-196.
    ABSTRACT A continuation of Das’s deep engagement with political theology, this text undertakes a deep and provocative reading of Kierkegaard’s political theology that strikes to the depths of our ontology. Positioned versus Church and State, a refutation of Christendom and its continuations in secular modernity, Kierkegaard’s political theology also exposes the limits and issues of Schmitt’s project. Tracing the influence of Schelling’s eschatological political theology upon Kierkegaard’s thought, Das articulates a political theology “to come” that is based upon the scandalous (...)
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  46. Kierkegaard’s Journals and Notebooks, Volume 11: Part 1, Loose Papers, 1830–1843: Edited by Niels Jorgen Cappelørn, Alastair Hannay, Bruce H. Kirmmse, David D. Possen, Joel D. Rasmussen, and Vanessa Rumble, Princeton, NJ, Princeton University Press, 2019, Xliii + 657 Pp., $85.00/£55.00.Tom Grimwood - 2021 - The European Legacy 26 (7-8):853-854.
    With this first part of the eleventh volume, Bruce Kirmmse et al.’s monumental task of translating Søren Kierkegaard’s journals and notebooks begins to draw to a close. The journals and notebooks t...
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  47. Despair as a Threat to Meaning: Kierkegaard’s Challenge to Objectivist Theories.Jeffrey Hanson - 2021 - Philosophies 6 (92):92.
    The question of meaning in life has enjoyed renewed attention in analytic discourse over the last few decades. Despite the apparently “existential” quality of this topic, existential philosophy has had little impact on this re-energized conversation. This paper draws on Kierkegaard’s _The Sickness unto Death_ in order to challenge the objectivist theory of meaning in life. According to that theory, a meaningful life is one replete with objective goods. Kierkegaard, however, exposits four forms of the spiritual sickness he calls despair (...)
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  48. Hope and the Chaos of Imagination in Kant and Kierkegaard.Eleanor Helms - 2021 - History of European Ideas 47 (3):456-469.
    ABSTRACT Faith for Kierkegaard is ‘beyond’ reason in some senses but not others. Faith is more specific and more subjective than concepts. On the other hand, Kant claims it is the faculty of reason that motivates us to make sense of anything and enables us to take something teleologically as a task, including faith. I begin from Kant’s account of the artistic genius to show how the faculties of imagination and understanding are related for Kant and how Kierkegaard’s description of (...)
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  49. Kierkegaard’s Three Spheres and Cinematic Fairy Tale Pedagogy in 'Frozen,' 'Moana,' and 'Tangled'.A. G. Holdier - 2021 - Journal of Religion and Popular Culture 33 (2):105–119.
    Although Disney films are sometimes denigrated as popular or “low” art forms, this article argues that they often engage deeply with, and thereby communicate, significant moral truths. The capitalistic enterprise of contemporary modern cinema demands that cinematic moral pedagogy be sublimated into non-partisan forms, often by substituting secular proxies for otherwise divine or spiritual components. By adapting Søren Kierkegaard’s tripartite existential anthropology of the self, I analyze the subjective experiences of the protagonists in three recent animated fairy tales—Disney’s Frozen, Moana, (...)
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  50. On the Limitations of Lao Sze Kwang’s “Trichotomy of the Self” in His Interpretation of Kierkegaard.Andrew Ka-Pok-Tam - 2021 - Kierkegaard Studies Yearbook 26 (1):523-545.
    In 1959, Lao Sze-Kwang, a well-known Chinese Kantian philosopher and author of the New Edition of the History of Chinese Philosophy, published On Existentialist Philosophy introducing existential philosophers to Chinese readers. This paper argues that Lao misinterpreted Kierkegaard’s ultimate philosophical quest of “how to become a Christian” as a question of ‘virtue completion,’ because he failed to recognize and acknowledge Kierkegaard’s distinction between aesthetic, moral and religious passion. By describing and clarifying Lao’s misinterpretation, the paper then argues that Lao’s trichotomy (...)
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