Kierkegaard: A Single Life

Kierkegaard: A Single Life

Taught by Stephen Backhouse

Discover a new understanding of Kierkegaard’s thought and his life.

Course Details

  • 15 Units

  • Self-paced

  • 3.25 hours of video

  • Beginner

  • Kierkegaard: A Single Life


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Course Description

Kierkegaard, like Einstein and Freud, is one of those geniuses whose ideas permeate the culture and shape our world even when relatively few people have read their works.

Soren Kierkegaard indeed lived an extraordinary life. He never saw the fruits of his work in his life—it would be almost 100 years after his death that others would unleash his words onto the wider world. Yet the Danish philosopher, theologian, social critic, and writer is now widely recognized as one of the world's most profound writers and thinkers, and his influence on philosophy, literature, and on secular and religious life and thought is incalculable.

Philosophers and theologians influenced by Kierkegaard include Karl Barth, Emil Brunner, Albert Camus, Jean-Paul Sartre, Thomas Merton, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Kafka, Martin Luther King Jr., and numerous others.

This course, by Kierkegaard scholar Stephen Backhouse presents the genius as well as the acutely sensitive man behind the brilliant books.

What you will learn:

  1. First, you’ll learn the story of Kierkegaard’s life—from his childhood and upbringing, to his family and relationships, to his public life and his death.
  2. Next, using his biography as a starting point, you’ll discover the development of his thought.
  3. Finally, you’ll get a straightforward overview of Kierkegaard’s works, and you’ll learn how to think about Kierkegaard today.

Meet Your Instructors

Stephen Backhouse

Stephen Backhouse is the Lecturer in Social and Political Theology at Mellitus College, London. He studied at the University of Oxford and McGill University. He has published a number of critically well-received books and articles on religion, history, and Kierkegaard, from the popular Kierkegaard: A Single Life published by Zondervan, to the academic Kierkegaard’s Critique of Christian Nationalism for Oxford University Press.

Course Outline

  • A Controversial Life

  • School Life

  • Family Life

  • Public Life

  • Private Life

  • Love Life

  • City Life

  • MIDTERM

  • Writing Life

  • Pirate Life

  • An Armed and Neutral Life

  • A Life Concluded

  • A Life Continued

  • Overview of the Works

  • FINAL EXAM


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