Kierkegaard's Socratic Art

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9780865546554: Kierkegaard's Socratic Art

The thesis for which this book offers support is Kierkegaards claim that he was a midwife for Christendom. The idea of midwifery is to develop the authors means of an analysis of portions of Platos Meno. That analysis leads to sensitivity in decisions about ascribing views articulated in the texts that are consideredprimarily Philosophical Fragmentsto Kierkegaard or to his pseudonyms. Consequently, Daise offers detailed textual analysis of the questions that are explicitly addressed in Philosophical Fragments, in order to show that what are ostensibly traditional metaphysical and epistemological issues are not those kinds of questions at all and that the formulation of the questions is demanded by the maieutic requirements of the environment in which Kierkegaard wrote.

Daise directly confronts interpretations of the Climacian writings that see Climacus as presenting traditional kinds of responses to theological or metaphysical questions. It is necessary for the author to provide some criticism of plausible accounts of portions of Fragments and Postscript that see Climacus as holding the kind of view he denies that he holds. Daise does this as part of an effort to provide analysis of textual language that shows the concern of Climacus to be, not just primarily existential, but wholly existential in character.

Since Kierkegaard hints at but does not develop an ethical justification for indirect communication, Daise examines possible arguments for the ethical requirement of indirect communication by Kierkegaard in order to assess Kierkegaards claim.

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About the Author:

Benjamin Daise is professor of philosophy at Hobart and William Smith Colleges.

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