Monday, July 12, 2010

KIERKEGAARD UNFAIR TO SCHLEGEL

But with irony quote the phenomenon is not the essence but the opposite of the essence unquote page 264. The object is deprived of its reality by what I have said about it. Regarded in an ironical light, the object shivers, shatters, disappears. Irony is thus destructive and what Kierkegaard worries about a lot is that irony has nothing to put in the place of what it has destroyed. The new actuality--what the ironist has said about the object--is peculiar in that it is a comment upon a former actuality rather than a new actuality.

5 comments:

plustaxsail said...

irony does nothing but destroys, it creates nothing and only provides a disgusted nod to the problem, but not actually going any further and addressing the very thing it sneers at.

Hamilton Morris said...

No no, you misunderstand. Irony is the spice of life, without irony there is no humor. This is simply me quoting Barthelme quoting Kierkegaard quoting Schlegel. Irony directed against the totality of existence is poetry blah blah blah...

Cory said...

Whole lotta people Gettin' Real Mad about irony in the present age, I guess because they misinterpret "what the kids are doing" into some wacky simulacrum of IronyTM.

Hamilton Morris said...

Anyone who dislikes irony must be totally unaware of what irony is. Irony is a potent device and few people take the time to understand why it is so potent - I think Kierkegaard breaks it down nicely in his thesis.

But I'll just post the (unabridged) OED's definition of irony to clear things up:

n. 1. A figure of speech in which the intended meaning is the opposite of that expressed by the words used; usually taking the form of sarcasm or ridicule in which laudatory expressions are used to imply condemnation or contempt.

Although Kierkegaard is talking about irony in the third sense:

n. 3. In etymological sense: Dissimulation, pretence; esp. in reference to the dissimulation of ignorance practised by Socrates as a means of confuting an adversary (Socratic irony).

plustax said...

Makes more sense now.