Romantic Self-Transformation in Kierkegaard
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Kierkegaard adapts conceptual resources from both early German Romanticism and Hegelianism. The adaptation in question triangulates these resources, such that certain elements of Romantic thought that are critical with regard to Hegel and certain aspects of Hegel’s thought that are critical of Romanticism combine in Kierkegaard. Specifically, he crafts a conception of dialectical transition by repurposing Romantic conceptions of irony and Hegelian conceptions of humor. Moving between what Kierkegaard calls the existential spheres involves these indirect modes of self-address, which in turn prompt “leaps” of radical self-transformation, that is, changes between types of selves.
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