A small, insignificant-looking intellectual with absurdly long legs, Soren Kierkegaard (1813-1855) was a veritable Hans Christian Andersen caricature of a man. A strange combination of witty cosmopolite and melancholy introvert, he spent years writing under a series of fantastical pseudonyms, lavishing all the splendor of his magnificent mind on a seldom-appreciative world. He had a tragic love affair with a young girl, was dominated by an unforgettable Old Testament father, fought a sensational literary duel with a popular satiric magazine, and died in the midst of a violent quarrel with the state church for which he had once studied theology. Yet this iconoclast produced a number of brilliant books that have profoundly influenced modern thought. In this classic biography, the celebrated Kierkegaard translator Walter Lowrie presents a charming and warmly appreciative introduction to the life and work of the great Danish writer. Lowrie tells the story of Kierkegaard's emotionally turbulent life with a keen sense of drama and an acute understanding of how his life shaped his thought.
The result is a wonderfully informative and entertaining portrait of one of the most important thinkers of the past two centuries. This edition also includes Lowrie's wry essay "How Kierkegaard Got into English," which tells the improbable story of how Lowrie became one of Kierkegaard's principal English translators despite not learning Danish until he was in his 60s, as well as a new introduction by Kierkegaard scholar Alastair Hannay.
Walter Lowrie (1868-1959) played a leading role in introducing Kierkegaard to the English-speaking world as his first English-language biographer and the first English translator of more than a dozen volumes of his work.
Introduction by Alastair Hannay ix Preface xxiii Background 3 Childhood 31 Early Youth - 1830 to 1834 55 The Great Earthquake - Twenty-second birthday 67 At the Cross Roads - 1835 79 The Path of Perdition- 1836 92 Groping His Way Back - May 1836 to May 1838 104 Father and Son United - Twenty-five years of age 118 The Great Parenthesis - August 1838 to July 1840 128 Regina - September 1840 to October 1841 135 The Aesthetic Works 1841 to 1845 144 The Postscript - 1846 166 The Affair of the Corsair - 1846- 176 Thirty-four Years Old - 1847 188 The Edifying Discourses - 1843 - 1855 196 Metamorphosis - 1848 201 Venturing Far Out - 1849 to 1851 210 Holding Out - 1852 to 1854 222 Godly Satire - 1854/55 239 Death and Burial - October 2 to November 18, 1855 253 Kierkegaard's Last Words 257 Kierkegaard's Works in English 261 How Kierkegaard Got into English 265 Index 289