|About the Book|
John Heywood Thomas was probably the earliest twentieth-century British scholar to study Kierkegaards texts. Here he offers, as the fruit of a lifetimes devotion to that study, what Kierkegaard would call a “fragment”—a little of what needs to be said about the legacy of this radical Danish writer, philosopher, and theologian.This book, based on lectures given at the University of Calgary, seeks to explore different aspects of Kierkegaards work in its original context and its legacy. Chapters include studies on Kierkegaard the writer (located within the history and development of European literature and nineteenth-century aesthetic theory) and Kierkegaard the philosopher (understood within the context of the development of philosophy in the first quarter of the nineteenth century). Also, since he always described himself as a religious thinker, Kierkegaards view of religion is explored and in particular his attitude to the possibility of Christianity without the confines of an established church. Because Kierkegaards philosophy is never separate from his religious thinking, Heywood Thomas also offers studies on the issues of metaphysics in Kierkegaard—its relation to theology, the scope of reason, the problem of time, and the meaning of death. Finally, to appreciate Kierkegaard as a man of his time as well as a “man for all seasons,” his views on education are considered.“I enthusiastically commend this book by the doyen of British Kierkegaard scholars. To the elucidation of Kierkegaards thought, John Heywood Thomas brings incisive analytical skills, a scholarly grasp of the history of Christian thought, detailed knowledge of Kierkegaard in his historical context and in subsequent debate, and a deep commitment to the Christian faith. This book is the fruit of a lifetimes reflection on Kierkegaard. It deserves to be widely read.”-Alan P F SellMilton Keynes, UK“John Heywood Thomas here presents the fruits of a lifetime of wrestling with the work of Kierkegaard. Always an astute reader of Kierkegaard, Thomas guides us through the central philosophical and theological concerns of Kierkegaards authorship, tracks the impact of Kierkegaards thought on much twentieth-century thought, and reminds us that the challenges set before Kierkegaards readers remain profoundly apposite in our own time.”-Murray RaeUniversity of Otago“In The Legacy of Kierkegaard Thomas gives us a reading of Kierkegaard which manages to be both faithful to the text and deeply original. While taking Kierkegaards Christian faith with the utmost seriousness, Thomas shows us a Kierkegaard who is a profound philosopher with deep things to say about metaphysics and ethics, time and immortality.”-C. Stephen EvansBaylor UniversityProfessor John Heywood Thomas studied under Paul Tillich and was described by Tillich as “my logical critic.” A lifetime researcher on Kierkegaard, Heywood Thomas has taught philosophy and theology at the Seminary of the Southwest, Austin, Texas, and at the universities of Manchester, Durham, and Nottingham in the UK.