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Fear and Trembling (Penguin Great Ideas) Paperback – May 30, 2006
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Top Customer Reviews
Print-on-demand publishers are responsible for keeping some great work available. Some of them are also responsible for presenting that work in the poorest possible light. Choose this book from a publisher you've heard of.
Ignore the critical interpretations available here, and skip directly to Steiner's introduction. What you will find there should convince you that this is the translation worth your money. Quite simply, Steiner writes beautifully, with an almost hypnotizing lyrical precision. And while Steiner isn't the translator, the flavor and quality of his prose closely matches that of the translation itself; I have yet to find another translation of "F&T" that I believe compares to Everyman's.
In the 19th century, secular philosophy believed that religion was explicable, whereas the difficulties of Hegel were exceedingly great. 'I for my part have devoted a good deal of time to the understanding of the Hegelian philosophy, I believe also that I understand it tolerably well, but when in spite of the trouble I have taken there are certain passages I cannot understand, I am foolhardy enough to think that he himself has not been quite clear. All this I do easily and naturally, my head does not suffer from it. But on the other hand when I have to think of Abraham, I am as though annihilated.'
Annihilated. Kierkegaard explores the biblical story of Abraham, who was commanded by God to sacrifice his only son, Isaac. Abraham sets out with the full intention of doing so, but is prevented at the last moment. A ram is provided as a sacrifice instead. Kierkegaard saw this as the supreme example of what it means to have faith, and how faith could never be properly understood through the lens of faith.Read more ›
Philosophers reflect the times in which they live. In the 19th century, technology and industry were progressing but so was large-scale warfare. As our lot improved, we gradually became aware of how bad things were. Through physics and engineering, man was conquering his world and so philosophers believed they too would soon understanding everything.
Kierkegaard correctly condemns the hubris of those philosophers who seek to "go beyond faith". His existentialism stands in stark contrast to the posturing of Hegel and the ramblings of Marx. Kierkegaard screams out man's pain and seeks refuge in Christian faith. But Kierkegaard is no mere fire and brimstone preacher. He is honest enough to see the core problem in Christianity and brave enough to attack it head on. In a word, faith is absurd.
Abraham is the father of faith to the three monotheistic myths, and according to Kierkegaard faith was born at a precise moment in the biblical story of Abraham. Faith was born when Abraham accepted god's command to sacrifice his son Isaac on an altar with a knife. He accepted this command, knew he would plunge the knife into his son despite the unbearable suffering this would cause him, and knew as well that everything would work out. Kierkegaard is crystal clear on this point: Abraham knew he would kill his son and he knew things would work out. That is faith and that is absurd and Kierkegaard revels dumbfounded in this fact.
He then justifies Abraham's act with his concept of a "teleological suspension of the ethical".Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a great existential work by a great Danish Christian Existential Philosopher addressing the issue of faith.Published on July 16, 2014 by Amazon Customer
If you are a thinker of any type, you should read the great philosophers who shaped Western thinking. Read morePublished on June 17, 2014 by WSV1975
Not happy because is a pdf file a found when I google it. Which i can convert for the same price.Published on April 17, 2014 by A. R. Diaz
It has been noted by several other reviewers, but I saw the cheap price tag and didn't pay attention. This version is truly awful, it lacks any introduction, notes, etc. Read morePublished on April 2, 2014 by Jacob
This isn't a bad piece of modern philosophy, however, this particular version is. The paperback is cheaply made and printed with poorly. Read morePublished on December 5, 2013 by Runewake2