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Philosopher of the Heart


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Clare Carlisle's innovative and moving biography writes Kierkegaard's remarkable life as far as possible from his own perspective, conveying what it was like to be this Socrates of Christendom - as he put it, living life forwards yet only understanding it backwards.

About the Author

Clare Carlisle is Professor of Philosophy at King's College London. She is the author of seven books, including Spinoza's Religion, Philosopher of the Heart- The Restless Life of S ren Kierkegaard, and On Habit. She has also edited George Eliot's translation of Spinoza's Ethics. She grew up in Manchester, studied philosophy and theology at Cambridge, and now lives in Hackney.


This lucid and riveting new biography at once rescues Kierkegaard from the scholars and makes it abundantly clear why he is such an intriguing and useful figure -- Adam Phillips * Observer *
She wonderfully conveys how, pelican-like, Kierkegaard tore his philosophy from his own breast -- Jane O'Grady * Telegraph *
Philosopher of the Heart enacts Kierkegaard's audacity and verve in thinking and writing, his "new way of doing philosophy", in a thrillingly inward and intimate style -- Boyd Tonkin * Arts Desk *
One of the best biographies of modern masters by a new generation -- Daniel Johnson * Standpoint *
Superb... the sort of biography Kierkegaard himself might have written, thematic in structure rather than chronological, lucid in its narrative but not exhaustive in detail. ... Carlisle's book has its own beauty, reminding us that Kierkegaard sympathized with our own troubles, our own desires to live decent lives -- David Mason * The Hudson Review *

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