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Søren KierkegaardSubjectivity, Irony, & the Crisis of Modernity$
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Jon Stewart

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198747703

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198747703.001.0001

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Hegel’s View of Socrates

Hegel’s View of Socrates

(p.22) 2 Hegel’s View of Socrates
Søren Kierkegaard

Jon Stewart

Oxford University Press

Kierkegaard’s understanding of Socrates was shaped by the interpretation of the German philosopher Hegel, whose thought was a popular trend at the University of Copenhagen in the late 1830s. So this chapter explores Hegel’s presence at the university and his analysis of Socrates. This provides the opportunity to revisit and build on the topics that were introduced in the first chapter: Socratic irony, aporia, the daimon, maieutics, etc. It is shown how Kierkegaard was inspired by the important historical role that Hegel ascribes to the person of Socrates. The biographical narrative continues by sketching the young Kierkegaard’s life as a university student and his trip to Gilleleje, where he wrote about seeking a truth for which to live and die. This provides the opportunity to introduce the figure of Hans Lassen Martensen, who was a lifelong rival for Kierkegaard and an important figure in the Danish reception of Hegel’s philosophy.

Keywords:   Kierkegaard, Socrates, Hegel, aporia, daimon, maieutics, Hans Lassen Martensen

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