I am currently in the process of reading/writing for the purpose of preparing a paper I’m presenting at the Society for the Study of Theology annual meeting at the University of Durham next week. As the topic of the conference is ‘Theology and Politics’, I’m attempting to explore an alternative political subjectivity in the works of Kierkegaard. This is partly due to selfish reasons, as I want to figure out if it actually is possible to map out a non-deconstructive/postmodern political reading of Kierkegaard, as my projected PhD involves doing just that in relationship to contemporary french philosophy, and particularly in relation to the political ontology of Alain Badiou. Thus far the most exciting thing I’ve read is Kierkeggard’s Two Ages, which up until this point I had never read. I honestly think anyone reading Kierkegaard, and especially anyone looking for a solid political line to emerge in his thought, should read this book immediately. So far I have found that going back and reading Fear and Trembling, Practice in Christianity, and The Sickness Unto Death, with Two Ages in mind has really illuminated the political potential to be found within the work of Kierkegaard. I don’t have my notes with me at the moment, but I’ll try to post some of my favorite quotes from Two Ages in the near future. Along with this re-reading of political subjectivity in Kierkegaard, I am also going to (possibly) attempt to build a bridge between the political thought of Kierkegaard with recent Latin American Liberation Theology. Luckily, I stumbled across a passage in Mark Dooley’s The Politics of Exodus, in which he states that “..Kierkegaard’s God is the God of Liberation Theology…” (p. 19); this should help provide at least a smudge of credibility to making this claim. If anyone has any thoughts/advice/suggestions on re-thinking Kierkegaard’s political thought, please share.
kierkegaard and politics