Spring 2019 catalog cover

The Penn Press list for spring 2019 includes hardcover releases, first-time paperbacks, and ebook editions intended for scholars, students, and serious general readers worldwide. Click here to explore our forthcoming books, grouped by subject area.

A Kind of Poet

Louis Mackey

344 pages | 5 1/4 x 8
Ebook 2016 | ISBN 9781512804072 | Buy from De Gruyter $79.95 | €69.95 | £70.50
This book is available under special arrangement from our European publishing partner De Gruyter.
An Anniversary Collection volume

"A sensitive, perceptive study by a philosopher who can write as well as think with verve. It's a joy to read it."—Paul Weiss

"I naturally approve highly of the effort to base a study of Kierkegaard in literary criticism, which is by far the most relevant approach to him, and one that helps correct the distortions of work on him which ignores this aspect."—Northrop Frye

"It is a book written by a dialectician of Kierkegaard's stature and with subtle wit, mastery of prose, and the ability to be succinct where Kierkegaard was discursive: no summary can do justice to the richness of insight in this book, and it is a source of quotations for anyone with a genuine interest in literature or philosophy, It is undoubtedly the most rewarding book that has come my way in many years."—Martin J. Scott-Taggart, The Journal of European Studies

Søren Aabye Kierkegaard (1813-1855) has traditionally been considered a philosopher or religious thinker. But to himself he was "a kind of poet and thinker." If Kierkegaard, then, writes Louis Mackey, is to be understood, he must be studied with the tools of literary criticism: "whatever philosophy there is in Kierkegaard is sacramentally transmitted 'in, with, and under poetry.'"

"The study of Kierkegaard," states Louis Mackey, "can throw new light on the relationship between philosophy and poetry." In these impressive analyses of Kierkegaard's most important works, a modern philosopher has written a book that is in itself a work of literary grace and distinction.

Louis Mackey was Professor of Philosophy at the University of Texas at Austin.

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