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Either / Or by Soren Kierkegaard

Either / Or (original 1843; edition 1971)

by Soren Kierkegaard, David F. Swenson (Translator), Lillian Marvin Swenson (Translator), Howard A. Johnson (Foreword)

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Title:Either / Or
Authors:Soren Kierkegaard
Other authors:David F. Swenson (Translator), Lillian Marvin Swenson (Translator), Howard A. Johnson (Foreword)
Info:Princeton : Princeton University Press [1971, c1959] Paperback ; 2 vols. (v.1 -- xii, 465 pp. ; v.2 -- xii, 370 pp.) (253 ; 254) -- Translated by David F. and Lillian Marvin Swensen. With Revisions and a Foreword by Howard A. Johnson.
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Either/Or: A Fragment of Life by Søren Kierkegaard (1843)



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The first part about the aesthetic is much more readable than the second part about the ethical. It is hard to understand how the same man wrote these two excerpts!
“I have always loved, on a moonlit night, to lie out in a boat on one of our lovely lakes. I take in the sails and the oars, remove the rudder, stretch out full-length, and gaze up into the vault of heaven. When the boat rocks on the breast of the waves, when the clouds scud before the strong wind so that the moon vanishes for a moment and then reappears, I find rest in this unrest. The motion of the waves lulls me, their lapping against the boat is a monstrous cradle-song.”
“Doubt, therefore, lies in difference, despair in the absolute. It requires talent to doubt, it requires no talent at all to despair; but talent as such is difference and what needs talent to make it effectual can never be the absolute, for it is only for the absolute that the absolute can be absolute as such.”
Perhaps the philosophy loses meaning in the translation. Perhaps I should reread the introductory explanations, or get a copy of the Cliff Notes. But I am too exhausted from slogging through to the end, to start over. I’ll just accept that I did my duty to give it a try, and remember some of the beautiful lines from the beginning. ( )
  drardavis | Dec 27, 2015 |
This is a classic of philosophy. Kierkegaard said not to read just one section of this book. But, that's what i did..lol.. The concept behind the whole book i've got though, so its okay. His idea is that there are two different ways of living your life, ascetically or morally according to the laws of whatever..religion, etc., and aesthetically or in the pursuit of beauty and pleasure for your own artistic reasons. Kierkegaard never really tells which one is best and that is for the reader to decide..maybe..perhaps he is saying that some blend of the two is ideal, and that to pursue either approach exlusively is wrong. That's what i believe. Regardless, I read this for the aesthetic parts, and his Seducers diary especially is a fascinating work on its own. I love the thoughts and characterization of Johannes, they are as you might expect, beautiful. ( )
1 vote ahystorian | Nov 23, 2007 |
The best of K! ( )
  xinyi | Sep 18, 2007 |
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» Add other authors (43 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Søren Kierkegaardprimary authorall editionscalculated
Hong, Edna H.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hong, Howard V.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lowrie, WalterTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amico mio! Quello che ti ho già detto tante volte, te lo ripeto, anzi te lo grido: o questo o quello, aut-aut! L'importanza dell'argomento giustifica l'uso delle parole.
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