SK - religious and anti-religious
- "The central nerve of my work as an author really lies in the fact
that I was essentially religious when I wrote *Either/Or*.
-The Journals of Kierkegaard,
ed. and trans. Alexander Dru (1938), 795 (1848).
"[The reader] will totally misunderstand me, [if] he does not
understand the religious totality in my whole work as an author...
"It goes without saying that I cannot explain my work as an author
wholly, i.e, with the purely personal inwardness in which I possess
the explanation of it. And this in part is because I cannot make
public my God relationship."
-The Point of View for My Work as an Author
(Trans. Lowrie, 1952, p.5-6, 9)
Then there is this from a 1999 article by Anne Mette Lundtofte in the
online "Scandinavian Review":
"It was because of his insistence on the fundamental uncertainty of
existence that Kierkegaard could be appropriated by the decidedly
atheistic 20th-century philosophical movement, "existentialism" of
1920s Germany and postwar France.
"Before that, ... The most prominent example [of the anti-religious
interpreter] is the Danish critic, Georg Brandes, whose influence on
the European reception of Kierkegaard cannot be overestimated. With
his 1877 biography, *Kierkegaard. A Critical Exposition In Outline,*
Brandes inaugurated Kierkegaard scholarship proper, ... subjecting
him to an explicitly non-religious reading.
"As Brandes explained in a letter to the German philosopher,
Friedrich Nietzsche, his book was an attempt to restrain the
religious influence SK's work might have. Brandes's motives for
doing so were his own political program for "free thinking," a
program that traveled throughout Scandinavia in the 1880s under the
heading: "The Modern Breakthrough."
"Then, there was the problem of translation. The "Kierkegaard" that
was handed down to other cultures was often a distorted version. The
most distorted was the [German] translation of Christian Schrempf,
who in the process of translating Kierkegaard in the early 1890s
trimmed, altered and even reconstructed the philosopher's work to
suit his whims. The result was atrocious, and Schrempf left the
readers of German with a disfigured Kierkegaard who was barely
recognizable at all."
Note: I post this as it was new to me, and I thought others might
appreciate the irony of what occurred to SK's work when it first