Not signed in (Sign In)
    • CommentTimeApr 30th 2009
    @IliaPop -

    For Nietzsche, I would start with this Walter Kaufmann edition of the /Genealogy of Morals/ - just ignore /Ecce Homo/ for now even though it is included, Nietzsche was quite mad by the time he wrote it.

    For Kierkegaard, I would choose this edition of /Repetition/. It is Kierkegaard's both most accessible and most challenging work, but most importantly the one that needs the least knowledge of Hegel in order to make sense. You really need to do at least a quick gloss of Hegel in order to get what Kierkegaard is on about. I also recommend picking up a biography of S.K. - normally I don't recommend knowing anything at all about the life of a philosopher in order to make sense of their works, but in the case of S.K. it really is pertinent. He was told from an early age that his father cursed God for his lot at being a boring Danish sheep doesn't get much more relevant for gloomy existentialists than that.
    • CommentTimeApr 30th 2009 edited
    BTW, I edited the subject line in the hopes of sparking some discussion. Existentialism is still quite relevant today, and I think it really deserves a second look in our post-postmodern age.
  1.  (5365.123)
    Thanks. I'll look out for them in my next visit to the bookshop...
    • CommentTimeJun 18th 2010
    Reviving this thread after a long absence:

    I have just ordered an abridged copy of the Diaries of Soren Kierkegaard, and will be beginning an irregular exegetical discussion on the topic.

    Why Kierkegaard? Stay tuned. Kierkegaard is the most current and cogent philosopher of all times. To be explicit: Kierkegaard > Nietzsche, in terms of both importance, writing quality and influence.

    We live in the End Times. Kierkegaard has the road map for our future difficulties.
      CommentAuthorcity creed
    • CommentTimeJun 18th 2010
    good lord, has it really been that long? :P
    heh, since my last post in this thread I have studied two terms of philosophy at uni and whittled away gradually at the edges of my ignorance.
    So, although I will be watching this thread with interest, I will be mostly lurking. Mostly.
  2.  (5365.126)
    Graduated in Philosophy. Wading through Rawls and WIttgenstein. Oh God.
    • CommentTimeJun 19th 2010
    I've just started reading LOGICOMIX - An Epic Search For Truth. Really enjoying it so far. It starts with Bertrand Russell.
    • CommentAuthorSolario
    • CommentTimeJun 19th 2010

    I haven't read all of Kierkegaard's work, so be prepared for some ignorance and two questions.

    But what about his, honestly, dubious attitude towards the existence of God? Primarily in relation to ethics. The idea that ethics are self-defined and logical, but have to be cast aside if one wishes to be achieve the highest stage of Kierkegaardian existence, the religious, which is illogical, strikes me as going against everything logic and modern philosophy is about. If you can't argue logically for it, it's nothing more than a delusion. You can't just excempt religion from being bound by logic.

    And I find the idea of his three stages to be somewhat inadequate. Why shouldn't I be able to enjoy the aesthetical existence and the ethical existence in some form of unity?
    • CommentTimeJun 19th 2010 edited
    @solario - I will definitely be addressing this more later, but I find ol' S.K. to be most rewarding if the "stages" (aesthetic, ethical, religious) are not seen as a literal developmental path. Keep in mind Kierkegaard's main target, philosophically, is Hegel. S.K. also loves tricks, jokes and misdirection for educational purposes. Don't those three stages look an awful lot like a Hegelian dialectical progression of thesis, antithesis and synthesis? Whenever you see anything in Kierkegaard's writing that smells like a dialectic, you should be suspicious that he is up to something.

    Try considering the "stages" then not as a progression culminating in the final synthesis, but as modalities or styles of existence. One may choose to regard an issue from an aethetic or ethical point of view, which are really only shorthand in turn for subjectivity vs. objectivity. S.K. is pointing out that humanity positions itself on the horns of a dilemma, oscillating between two different perspectives on existence - "How do I feel about it?" versus "What is right for everyone?" - and the possibility of (at least) one other perspective, the religious, which may *transcend* the two positions. And the religious "stage", in turn, may or may not turn out to be about any sort of God at all.

    What I hope to find in the /Diaries/ is the central way this played out in S.K.'s own life, his failure to marry Regine Olsen.