Chapter

6. A Penchant For Disguise: The Death (and Rebirth) of the Author in Kierkegaard and Nietzsche

Daniel Berthold

in The Ethics of Authorship

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print February 2011 | ISBN: 9780823233946
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823240432 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5422/fso/9780823233946.003.0007
6. A Penchant For Disguise: The Death (and Rebirth) of the Author in Kierkegaard and Nietzsche

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This chapter situates Kierkegaard's commitment to death in companionship with a similar, if not identical, commitment on the part of Friedrich Nietzsche. Both conceptualize the relation between self and other as occurring across an abyss of difference that dissolves the authority of the author, and adhere to a philosophy of language in which the author's text becomes infinitely interpretable according to the position occupied by the reader. But notwithstanding the inventiveness with which Kierkegaard and Nietzsche practice the art of dying, we can discern a fundamental ambivalence: With every intention of dying, they have recurring second thoughts; at the entrance to the tomb they hesitate, giving in to a certain nostalgia for the privileged position of the author.

Keywords: Søren Kierkegaard; Friedrich Nietzsche; death; authorship

Chapter.  11469 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Language

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