As I mentioned on Sunday, the 5th was the 200th birthday of Søren Kierkegaard. In honor, I figured it would be time for a themed Wednesday post rounding up the internet buzz surrounding the event–and the hive is stirred. There are all sorts of blogs collecting quotes as well as newspapers and journals offering short biographies and write-ups, from the Danish embassy in South Korea all the way to the Buenos Aires Herald. Twitter is ablaze, as usual. Below, however, I’ve collected what I think are some stand-out links, in hopes that I might cut some of the fat for those interested. In some ways, I have committed the ultimate sin; I have compiled a list of information that contributes to the shallow information based culture of our day. But I hope I will be forgiven, and I hope these links encourage the reader to pursue Kierkegaard beyond the academic essays, pithy statements, and cutesy gimmicks. Please contribute to the comment section if you find other links that might be relevant. I may continue to update this page as things continue to materialize, especially since I found most of them by feverish Googling over the past few days and drudging through some old favorites folders. Without further ado: Prepare for the wall of text. [Note: “**” indicates links added after the initial post.]
Gordon Marino, director of the Hong Library at St. Olaf’s, at the New York Times.
Ulrika Carlsson, doctoral candidate at Yale, also at the New York Times.
Jeffrey Frank, translator of Hans Christen Andersen (Kierkegaard’s rival), again on the New York Times. (Though I must say I think I disagree with the overarching point here.)
George Pattison, legendary scholar and professor at Oxford, at The Tablet.
Aron Reppman, professor at Trinity Christian College, at ThinkChristian.
Daphne Hampson, recent author of Kierkegaard: Exposition and Critique, at Oxford University Press.
Julian Baggini, founder of The Philosopher’s Magazine, at Aeon Magazine. (This article is especially good.)
Michael D. Stark, adjunct professor at Trinity Christian College, at Relevant Magazine. Stark also recently reviewed Sylvia Walsh’s book, Kierkegaard: Thinking Christianly in an Existential Mode, here.
S. Brent Plate, Visiting Associate Professor of Religious Studies, Hamilton College, at Huffington Post.
The London Institute for Contemporary Christianity provides a short reflection from Stephen Backhouse, Lecturer in Social and Political Theology at St Mellitus College and author of the necessary book Kierkegaard’s Critique of Nationalism.
**Hubert Dreyfus, Patrick Stokes, and Tim Rayner on the Philosopher’s Zone at the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (audio).
Church Times, an Anglican newspaper, presents an excellent appropriation of Kierkegaard for church use (if there is such a thing). On a related note, Kierkegaard has a feast day in the Episcopal Church–September 8.
The Times Literary Supplement digs up a few old articles and recognizes the occasion.
The Guardian uses the opportunity to make a great crack at VP Biden.
Litkicks gives Levi Asher space to reflect on Kierkegaard’s birthday.
Standpoint Magazine hosts reflections by Daniel Johnson on Kierkegaard as an underrated philosopher.
Telegraph’s Travel Section has Chris Moss reporting on what it was like to be in Denmark for the bicentenary.
The University of Copenhagen has been updating with links and resources. This article highlighting real artifacts from Kierkegaard’s life is especially interesting. From the article:
“After Kierkegaard broke off the engagement to Regine Olsen, he had the ring remade so that the stones formed the shape of a cross. The symbolism of that decision can be interpreted as a transformation of his physical love for Olsen to Christian love, and thus as an eternal symbol of the marriage that would never come to be,” says Joakim Garff.
Internet and Artistic Tributes
Dialectics and Disiderata reflects on this 200th birthday.
Bleak Theology gives personal reflections on Kierkegaard.
Kim Boch surveys opportunities to visit places in Copenhagen relevant to Kierkegaard’s life. She also rounds up a few happenings around the world and web.
Escape to Reality presents 12 great quotes.
The American Conservative posts reflections from Rod Dreher.
The Jesus Blog posts a great quotation about their own specialty, biblical criticism.
The Excavator posts several write-ups and pulls out some good quotes.
Per Crucem ad Lucem hosts guest author Andrew Torrance, Kierkegaard scholar.
Patheos hosts Kyle Roberts, whose book on Kierkegaard (Emerging Prophet: Kierkegaard and the Postmodern People of God.) is on sale in honor. Roberts also shows up on Q.
Baker Book House Church Connection still has an interview I did with Louis a while back. Here are part one, part two, and part three.
**Paul Raymont also rounds up several links, including a list of links he put together a while back. This post also receives a mention. Thanks, Paul!
Among Kierkegaard scholars, there are several who keep regular blogs. Thomas Satterlee, M. G. Piety, Jon Malesic, Amy Laura Hall, James Rovira, Michael D. Stark, Patrick Stokes, and Ed Mooney keep theirs updated, some more than others (please add in comments if you find others).
Google Doodle, nodding to Kierkegaard’s use of pseudonyms. Especially awesome is the top hat reminiscent of K.’s caricatures in The Corsair, and the repeated whimsical hairdo. There is a write-up at The Independent.
Oxford Journals offers free access to several excellent articles on K.’s thought.
Princeton University Press rolls out the first of their Kierkegaard Kittens on Facebook.
Bruun-Rasmussen highlights opportunities for rare book dealing during the bicentennial.
Open Culture presents a few helpful media links.
Kierkegaard and Love. There is a touring artistic project endorsed by the Queen of Denmark floating around Europe these days.
Søren Kierkegaard – The Musical. Kierkegaard for kids? A stage adaptation makes Kierkegaard more accessible. The event, which is not only for kids and includes a musical and comedy elements, is elaborated on at The Independent. For even more on the cabaret, see here. Here’s a photo from The Big Story:
A Few Notable Events
Kierkegaard2013. An entire web site has been created to list the events around the world regarding Kierkegaard for this year. The site contains many other helpful resources.
Visit Copenhagen. Kierkegaard is a real tourist attraction for Copenhagen, as their site demonstrates.
Clare Carlisle delivers a lecture in London on the courage of faith.
St. Olaf will host what might be the largest gathering of Kierkegaard scholars in history.
The Søren Kierkegaard Research Centre in Japan is hosting several events in honor.
The Society for Existential Analysis publicizes that the Kierkegaard, Religion, and Culture Group will host an incredible panel discussion including Niels Jørgen Cappelørn, John D. Caputo, George Pattison, and Eric Ziolkowski at the American Academy of Religion.
The Royal Library in Denmark hosts Kierkegaard’s original papers in a unique exhibition discussed by the Denmark Agency for Culture. You can see some intriguing photos there. Read more about the exhibit itself on the web site of the Royal Library.
The Queen and Prince of Denmark make public appearances in honor of one of their most famous citizens.
Kierkegaard Research Center. This center, housed in Denmark, is the hub of Kierkegaard activity throughout the world. They streamed a prestigious line-up of Kierkegaard scholars over the beginning of the week.
International Kierkegaard Society. This site is managed by Jon Stewart and helps collect calls for papers, book projects, etc.
Toronto Kierkegaard Circle. The Kierkegaard Circle continues its activity, commemorating the bicentennial this year.
Repeating Good Links
Clare Carlisle’s excellent series on Kierkegaard’s philosophy written for the New York Times. Carlisle is one of my favorite commentators. She is also found on the Philosophy Bites podcast discussing Fear and Trembling. There is also an episode of Partially Examined Life dealing with the Sickness Unto Death with Daniel Horne.
Archive.org hosts a great lecture by Walter Kaufmann.
A collection of links that is still relevant is found at the blog Online Kierkegaard Links.
Kierkegaardian author Walker Percy makes use of the Dane’s categories in his literature. The New York Times hosts a 1985 review of a collection of interviews with him.
The Lev Shestov library online hosts a book of his entitled Kierkegaard and the Existential Philosophy.
If you have ever been looking for a Kierkegaard shirt, look no further. The modeling alone is worth the click.
Jon Stewart, legendary scholar, will be offering a free course online through the University of Copenhagen. The course starts October 7, and you can sign up for it here. I’ll be taking it. Here’s a teaser trailer for it:
You may be surprised where Kierkegaard shows up these days. With regard to more academic influences, Wikipedia has both a section in the main entry on Kierkegaard, as well as a list expanding further on his influence, but here are a few others from popular culture you might have missed.
Producer Damon Lindelof commented on Jimmy Kimmel: “We want the kids to be reading as much Kierkegaard as possible.” Fear and Trembling is found on LOST, setting up themes of the Knight of Faith.
Matt Groening, creator of the Simpsons and more, cites Kierkegaard as an influence.
Thanks for the ride thus far, Kierkegaard.
”…I had thought of celebrating my birthday with something new, which I have never tasted before, Castor oil,” Søren Kierkegaard wrote in a brief humorous reflection on his 39th birthday on May 5, 1852.
Oh, by the way,
Kierkegaard shares his birthday, May 5, with Karl Marx–happy 195th, Karl.