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The Religion of ExistenceAsceticism in Philosophy from Kierkegaard to Sartre$
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Noreen Khawaja

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780226404516

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226404653.001.0001

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Conversion as a Way of Life

Conversion as a Way of Life

(p.70) Chapter 2 Conversion as a Way of Life
The Religion of Existence

Noreen Khawaja

University of Chicago Press

Here the core issue of Kierkegaard’s thought—what it means to become a Christian—is presented as a psychological adaptation of the Pietist ideal of conscious, ongoing conversion. As Kierkegaard adapts this religious model of conversion to the task of becoming a self, he develops a new language of identity in which the individual’s relation to herself is charged with ascetic normativity. The chapter identifies the originality of Kierkegaard’s appropriative view of choice––the view that any choice is at once an act of self-making and an act of penitence––as a key foundation for existential notions of authenticity.

Keywords:   Søren Kierkegaard, conversion, identity, choice, appropriation, repentance, Pietism

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