Read e-book online Augenblick: The Concept of the 'Decisive Moment' in 19th- PDF

By Koral Ward

Augenblick, which means actually 'In the blink of an eye', describes a 'decisive second' in time that's either fleeting but momentously eventful, even epoch-makingly major. during this ebook Koral Ward investigates the improvement of the idea that into one of many middle rules in Western existential philosophy along such innovations as nervousness and person freedom. Ward examines the full quantity of the assumption of the 'decisive moment', during which an individual's complete life-project is open to an intensive reorientation. From its inception in Kierkegaard's works to the writings of Jaspers and Heidegger, she attracts on an enormous array of resources past simply the normal figures of nineteenth and twentieth century Continental philosophy, discovering rules and examples in images, cinema, song, paintings, and the trendy novel.

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Extra info for Augenblick: The Concept of the 'Decisive Moment' in 19th- and 20th-Century Western Philosophy

Example text

Moment, moment, Moment In Fragments Kierkegaard gradually unfolds the concept of the moment from a temporal to an eternal meaning. There are two translations of Smuler into English, a comparison of which reveals typographical differences in their rendering of the word ‘moment’: the first, by David F. Swenson (1936), the second by Howard V. Hong and Edna H. Hong (1985). Swenson in particular identifies different types of moment, which raises the question as to whether he is correctly interpreting Kierkegaard’s intended meanings and whether or not meaning has even been lost or distorted.

Only in love is the different made equal and man acquires the possibility of eternal happiness, an ‘eternal consciousness’ as Climacus says. A new capacity for understanding an ‘eternal communication’ and a subjective inward relation with the god. One can make this find only in a personal, subjective ‘discovery’ for (and by) oneself, one cannot learn it from another, or from doctrine. One of Kierkegaard’s criticisms of Christianity was that the disinterested acceptance of church doctrine, as the articles of belief and the rules of practice, was not Christianity in the true spiritual sense.

It becomes evident as an ‘Archimedian point’, to use Kierkegaard’s own term, in both his ‘edifying’ religious works and in the more literary works. Throughout, the term ‘moment’ is used both in an ‘everyday’ or temporal sense and in an elevated, ‘eternal’ sense. This double meaning is characteristic of Kierkegaard’s oeuvre: everything truly Christian, he writes, ‘has a double meaning’ and as a result, we shall see, this produces a third factor, or ‘synthesis’. Kierkegaard deals with the concept most directly in two particular books published within four days of one another: Philosophical Fragments or a Fragment of Philosophy (1844), a hypothetical work written under the pseudonym Johannes Climacus, and The Concept of Anxiety (1844), ‘psychological’ rather than hypothetical and written under the pseudonym Vigilius Haufniensis.

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Augenblick: The Concept of the 'Decisive Moment' in 19th- and 20th-Century Western Philosophy by Koral Ward


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