Narrative, Identity and the Kierkegaardian Self

Narrative, Identity and the Kierkegaardian Self

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Overview

'Are our lives enacted dramatic narratives? Did Kierkegaard understand human existence in these terms? Anyone grappling with these two questions will find in these excellent essays a remarkable catalogue of insights and arguments to be reckoned with in giving an answer. That is no small achievement.'

Professor Alasdair MacIntyre, University of Notre Dame

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Is each of us the main character in a story we tell about ourselves, or is this narrative understanding of selfhood misguided and possibly harmful? Are selves and persons the same thing? And what does the possibility of sudden death mean for our ability to understand the narrative of ourselves?

These questions have been much discussed both in recent philosophy and by scholars grappling with the work of the enigmatic 19th-century thinker Søren Kierkegaard. For the first time, this collection brings together figures in both contemporary philosophy and Kierkegaard studies to explore pressing issues in the philosophy of personal identity and moral psychology. It serves both to advance important ongoing discussions of selfhood and to explore the light that, 200 years after his birth, Kierkegaard is still able to shed on contemporary problems.


  • Brings together leading figures in a central philosophical debate of ongoing significance: personal identity
  • Engages with a range of questions of vital importance for the debate about narrative selfhood
  • Demonstrates Kierkegaard’s capacity to generate new and illuminating insights for contemporary discussions across a range of traditions



Roman Altshuler, Visiting Assistant Professor, University of the Pacific


Kathy Behrendt, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Wilfrid Laurier University


Matias Møl Dalsgaard, PhD, University of Aarhus and CEO of GoMore


John J. Davenport, Professor of Philosophy, Fordham University


Eleanor Helms, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo


John Lippitt, Professor of Ethics and Philosophy of Religion, University of Hertfordshire and Honorary Professor of Philosophy, Deakin University


George Pattison, 1640 Chair of Divinity, University of Glasgow


Anthony Rudd, Visiting Associate Professor of Philosophy, St Olaf College and Research Fellow, University of Hertfordshire


Michael J. Sigrist, Professorial Lecturer in Philosophy, George Washington University


Marya Schechtman, Professor of Philosophy, University of Illinois, Chicago


Patrick Stokes, Senior Lecturer in Philosophy, Deakin University and Research Fellow, University of Hertfordshire


Michael Strawser, Associate Professor of Philosophy, University of Central Florida


Walter Wietzke, Instructor of Philosophy, University of Wisconsin, River Falls




  • Visit John Lippitt's Academia.edu profile
  • Visit Patrick Stokes' website

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780748694433
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
Publication date: 05/18/2015
Pages: 248
Product dimensions: 9.20(w) x 6.30(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author



John Lippitt is Professor of Ethics and Philosophy of Religion at the University of Hertfordshire. He is the author of Kierkegaard and the Problem of Self-Love (Cambridge, 2013), The Routledge Philosophy Guidebook to Kierkegaard and Fear and Trembling (Routledge, 2003; 2nd edition pending) and Humour and Irony in Kierkegaard's Thought (Palgrave, 2000). He is co-editor of The Oxford Handbook of Kierkegaard (Oxford, 2013).

Patrick Stokes is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at Deakin University. He is co-editor of Kierkegaard and Death (Indiana University Press, 2011) and author of Kierkegaard's Mirrors: Interest, Self and Moral Vision (Palgrave, 2010)

Table of Contents



Acknowledgements
Abbreviations
Contributors

Introduction
John Lippitt and Patrick Stokes

1. The Moments of a Life: On Some Similarities between Life and Literature
Marya Schechtman

2. Teleology, Narrative and Death
Roman Altshuler

3. Kierkegaard's Platonic Teleology
Anthony Rudd

4. Narrative Holism and the Moment
Patrick Stokes

5. Kierkegaard's Erotic Reduction and the Problem of Founding the Self
Michael Strawser

6. Narrativity and Normativity
Walter Wieizke

7. The End in the Beginning: Eschatology in Kierkegaard's Literary Criticism
Eleanor Helms

8. Forgiveness and the Rat Man: Kierkegaard, 'Narrative Unity' and 'Wholeheartedness' Revisited
John Lippitt

9. The Virtues of Ambivalence: Wholeheartedness as Existential Telos and the Unwillable Completion of Narravives
John J. Davenport

10. Non-Narrative Protestant Goods: Protestant Ethics and Kierkegaardian Selfhood
Matias M l Dalsgaard

11. Narrativity, Aspect, and Selfhood
Michael J. Sigrist

12. The Senses of an Ending
Kathy Behrendt

13. The End? Kierkegaard's Death and its Implications for Telling his Story
George Pattison

Index

What People are Saying About This

Edward F. Mooney

This wonderful collection tackles the issue of who I am and where I’m going (if anywhere), and the place of telling my story in forming my identity. It opens new vistas on this philosophical concern, drawing on MacIntyre, Taylor and Frankfurt, and centrally, Kierkegaard – a virtuoso explorer of this terrain.

University of Notre Dame Alasdair MacIntyre

Are our lives enacted dramatic narratives? Did Kierkegaard understand human existence in these terms? Anyone grappling with these two questions will find in these excellent essays a remarkable catalogue of insights and arguments to be reckoned with in giving an answer. That is no small achievement.

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