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Climacus the (multi-dimensional) humorist: interpreting ‘An understanding with the reader’

  • KRISTY VIPPERMAN (a1)

Abstract

‘An understanding with the reader’ which appears as an appendix to Kierkegaard's Concluding Unscientific Postscript has puzzled readers by apparently ‘taking back’ everything that the pseudonymous author Climacus has said in the text that precedes it. I agree with John Lippitt that this ‘revocation’ should be read as a humorous statement; however, I disagree with Lippitt's assessment that the tone of the revocation is essentially ‘non-urgent’ and ‘modest’. I propose that a fuller picture of Climacus's character is needed to understand the spirit of the revocation and its relationship to the rest of the text.

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