Stream: Philosophy, Ethics, Consciousness DR JYTTE HOLMQVIST HBU-UCLan School of Media, Communication & Creative Industries

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Stream: Philosophy, Ethics, Consciousness DR JYTTE HOLMQVIST HBU- UCLan School of Media, Communication & Creative Industries

RESILIENCE IN OUR HOUR OF NEED

The European Conference on Arts & Humanities (ECAH2021) UCL, Institute of Education, UK | July 22–25, 2021

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ABSTRACT

In these transformative times of interrupted realities we take a step back, not of our own free will but by force, after prior to COVID-19 having been engaged in a frantic rush forward in search for some unattainable goal while the past was left forgotten in the dust and material hype mattered more than ever. While a large part of the world is now suffering and the elderly are more vulnerable than ever–dying or, perhaps rather, sacrificed, in what feels like unprecedented numbers ̶ families are left to mourn alone, not always able to gather around their loved ones at the time of farewell to the body and the “living soul”. As we watch the world change, in disbelief, no longer are we in control nor are we as powerful as we once believed. This all-consuming, pervasive, seemingly never-ending pandemic teaches us to appreciate the greater value of nature, to really see “the other”, and to understand the true meaning of "less is more". And while we slowly realise there is no turning back and that the virus was perhaps written in the cards all along, we must practise resilience and mindfulness and ultimately step away from ourselves to see the bigger picture. This paper looks at our word in a both emotional and pragmatic light while it draws on existentialist theories of Søren Kierkegaard and Simone de Beauvoir (who saw people as fundamentally free and to whom “existentialism is a form of subjectivism”, as clarified in her existentialist expose “ Qu’est-ce que l’existentialisme ?” (1947). Kierkegaard and de Beauvoir are highly lucid and astute, acutely aware of the changing times, both querying and inquisitive, and they are both refreshingly modern or rather timelessly relevant; matter of fact and direct about what really matters and is at the core of human existence.         Aho 2020, x.

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This paper is concerned not only with how existentialism has evolved with the times and shaped our thoughts and perspectives of our surrounding world and our own realities. But it also considers the existentialist movement as one that needs to be assessed from a broader perspective, an -ism that, to be fully understood and put into actual practice, must be extracted from academia per se, step out or away from the page and be directly, methodologically, applied to the way we view our current context. As such, existentialism becomes a formula for how to live and understand life and the roles we play. It provides a lens through which we familiarise ourselves with the world in which we operate and societal changes that shape our human condition – and our understanding of these, sometimes transformative, changes. It is a philosophy, or an informal set of core guidelines that, if adhered by, help us learn to liberate ourselves from an uncritical collective, and embrace the possibility many of us still have to act as independent yet law-abiding agents with a free will who work towards the bettering of society but remain independent in our reasoning and personal decision-making. In line with the existentialist tradition, while we remain in a subordinate position to God and must not lose sight of the divine higher purpose that should always be our guiding star we must remain questioning individuals and not fear the fear that comes with being human. Rather, it is in the pain and discomfort that we are able to delve deeper and reach higher all at once. And we must intensely live and experience the whole range of human emotions.

INTRODUCTION & METHODOLOGY

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Kierkegaard explains his religious attitude verging on the philosophical, in Fear and Trembling : “Anyone who loves God needs no tears, no admiration; he forgets the suffering in love. Indeed, so completely has he forgotten it that there would not be the slightest trace of his suffering left if God himself did not remember it, for he sees in secret and recognizes distress and counts the tears and forgets nothing”. (Kierkegaard as quoted in 2006, Strawser 60)

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Fear and Trembling by Søren Kierkegaard

S ø ren Kierkegaard Copenhagen 1813-1855

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Thinker-philosophers like S ø ren Kierkegaard and Simone de Beauvoir, more specifically, broke away from conformity by questioning largely undisputed ‘truths’ or norms relating to institutional structures on a both societal and personal level (in terms of, e.g., falsehood or predictable lifestyles versus a strive towards greater authenticity, conventional worship procedures, and standard family setups including marriage as an institution). They recommended, without being prescriptive, a path forward where individuals should strive to find their own footing while still being functional within the parameters of civil society. Kierkegaard and de Beauvoir recommend a search for our own freedom and an existence which, even if it may be solitary and anxiety-ridden at times, opens up for alternatives and allows us to embrace a lifestyle and way forward where we may be more readily able to find our true selves and a more easily discernible meaning to our existence. No matter how hard the winds of changes and turmoil blow around us, existentialism in general differs from more dogmatic doctrines in that it offers a way forward where we should not shy away from hardships and where human suffering becomes an important part of our personal growth. In their mind, societal issues and complexities are unavoidable and if we confront these problems head on and try to find a solution we may grow stronger, more capable and more independent as a result. By keeping to this outlook on life we should also be able to avoid, as the saying goes, the trap of being ‘born originals, we all die copies’.

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Action scenes from world literature: Simone de Beauvoir - Archyde

Simone de Beauvoir Paris 1908-1986

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In terms of research methodology and philosophical direction of this paper, Kierkegaard and de Beauvoir are paired up as modern existentialist thinkers par excellence. Commonalities between the two have likewise been found by other scholars and reviewers who also highlight the universal value and applicability of these scholars. Focusing specifically on the lasting relevance of de Beauvoir, Joe Humphreys (writing for The Irish Times ), Carmen Lea Dege ( The Boston Review) and Professor Jennifer McWeeny at Worcester Polytechnic Institute provide some excellent contemporary Beauvoirian observations – with the latter, writing , in her Council for European Studies article “A New Existentialism for Infectious Times” – that:

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The French existentialists who formed their ideas in the belly of World War II knew what it was to be afraid of mortality and an unknown future. Theirs is a philosophy born out of the desire to give meaning to their lives within the trembling softness and vulnerability of the human condition that come to light in times of global crisis. Much like de Beauvoir and her famous entourage, we, too, are contending with an unexpected and catastrophic visitor. The coronavirus pandemic therefore allows us to enter the historical experience of these French thinkers more deeply than we have before. More importantly, it shows how existentialism can empower us at the very moment when we feel most helpless and passive, when we are waiting uneasily for an outcome that we cannot know in advance. ( McWeeny 2020)

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Although existentialism has been defined time and time again, common characteristics or key concepts are individualism and the strive for authenticity, our freedom to choose, pain, anguish/anxiety and suffering as part of the human condition, the stepping away from the collective and going our own way, and our ultimate ability to cope under an external pressure that affects our internal selves – either we do so or we go under but if we face our demons and fail, at least we tried. Concerned with humanity and ever pertinent questions relating to self as we are affected by the changing world around us, existentialism queries the meaning and highlights the absurdity of it all, ponders the reason for our existence as well as the concept of ‘existence before essence’ – which calls forth the idea of ‘tabula rasa’ where we are born blank slates and gain or create essence through our worldly and also spiritual experiences; including the sense of dread felt as we ponder our own death and the end to our at least physical existence. Indeed, existentialism is a philosophy to embrace in times of need. Even if it does not provide all the answers, this philosophy or movement poses questions that, if pondered on, reflect common concerns among individuals globally as we are affected by our times, and which may help us better navigate the many complexities that are part of being human – knowing that even if we often operate alone, we are, in fact, not alone in this world.

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EXISTENTIALISM puts the emphasis on moral individualism… There is no basis and given human nature that is common to all people and so each person must define what humanity means to them and what values or purpose will dominate in their lives … Rather than seeking the highest good that would be universal, existentialists have sought means for each individual to find the highest good  for them , regardless of whether it might ever apply to anyone else at any other time. (Cline 2019)

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Picture

What Is Existentialism?

Existential Choice | 3 Quarks Daily

What existentialism taught me about life and photography – A.B Watson

Albert Camus, Our Existential Epidemiologist

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“When around one everything has become silent, solemn as a clear, starlit night, when the soul comes to be alone in the whole world, then before one there appears, not an extraordinary human being, but the eternal power itself, then the heavens open, and the I chooses itself or, more correctly, receives itself. Then the personality receives the accolade of knighthood that ennobles it for an eternity” (Kierkegaard as quoted in Hong 1978, 76). “The knight of faith is the only happy man, the heir to the finite while the knight of resignation is a stranger and an alien” (Kierkegaard as quoted in Westphal 2014, 420).

The Seventh Seal - Kierkegaard's Knight of Faith - YouTube

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As he became increasingly philosophically-oriented he was drawn to Hegelian dialectics, an ‘ideal’ society where “the will of each individual and society’s laws must coincide, because, ultimately, human beings are defined by their relations to others” (Robinson and Zarate 2013, 30). Yet, Kierkegaard never stepped away from religion and equalled a religious person as one who must grasp the secret of suffering as the form of the highest life, higher than all good fortune … For this is the severity of the religious, that it begins by making everything more severe. ( Kierkegaard in Concluding Unscientific P ostscript to Philosophical Fragments . As quoted in Carlisle 2019, xv)

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Philosopher of the Heart by Clare Carlisle - Penguin Books Australia

Kierkegaard, Søren "Either/Or Vol I" | Cover & Typography by… | Flickr

Soren Kierkegaard quote: I see it all perfectly; there are two possible situations...

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The ever-questioning Kierkegaard proposed alternatives all along and his idea of ‘either/or’ reflects an individualistic experience of informed choices and decisions. Nevertheless, his contemporary Denmark was both hierarchically divided and divisive and decisions were taken by a powerful elite in the apparent interest of its ‘subordinates’/ the people, or who could be defined as the proletariat. The unquestioning middle classes – or the public that “is ever ything and nothing, the mos t dangerous of all powers and the most trifling” (Kierkegaard 2019, orig. 1846) would rather support the powers at be than shake the foundations of a smoothly organised ‘democratic’ society. Kierkegaard – a man who through family wealth rather than any lucrative projects of his own gained access to the bourgeoisie yet broke away from common norms and behaviour – was often plagued with regrets but didn’t stray from his chosen life path; fatalistically sticking to his decisions. Generally regarded as the father of existentialism (in Kevin Aho’s words “ avant la letter”) ( Aho 2020, 4), Kierkegaard may have been either too troubled or too deeply lost in thought to have realised to what extent he would be shaping an existentialist movement that would draw extensively from his many reflections as regards us querying the passive and blindly acceptant collective; the masses who [in Kierkegaard’s days] opted for uncritical pious   revery and fidelity when, all along, they had the option to embrace free will, free decision-making and take responsibility for their own actions. He was also of the firm conviction that “[a] man must first learn to know himself before knowing anything else. Not until he has inwardly understood himself and then sees the course he is to take does his life gain peace and meaning – that irony of life which manifests itself in the sphere of knowledge”. (Kierkegaard in Carlisle 2020, 108)

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What Is Existentialism? by Simone de Beauvoir - Penguin Books Australia

In her 1947 core text “ Qu’est-ce que l’existentialisme ?”, she writes that this concept or philosophy: “claims to be a practical and living attitude towards the problems posed by the world today. It is a philosophy yet does not want to stay enclosed in books and schools; it intends to revive the great tradition of ancient wisdom that also involved difficult physics and logic, yet proposed a concrete human attitude to all men .” (de Beauvoir 2004, 3 – or. 1947)

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We are all existentialists now | Polity

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In his comprehensive study on Existentialism, Kevin Aho writes that: Although existentialism cannot be reduced to a unified doctrine or school of thought and its major representatives differ widely in their views, the common thread that ties these thinkers together is their concern for the human situalion as it is lived- This is a situation that cannot be reasoned about 01 captured in an abstract system; it can only be felt and made meaningful by concrete choices and actions of the existing individual- (Aho 2020,

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Ours is a world quite different from the mid to late-19 th century Danish society of Kierkegaard – and also the 1960s society in which de Beauvoir and her likeminded thinkers operated. And still their thoughts resonate with us, our own society undergoing widely transformative changes that shake our foundations – and their texts have a resounding effect on readers and societies through the ages. If we, to begin, read the thoughts that troubled, plagued and fuelled Kierkegaard throughout his short but intensely lived life and apply them to our own context, we discover a man who was a strong believer yet travelled his own path and questioned the religious manifestations promoted by Lutheran Protestantism. Kierkegaard took distance from the status quo and defended a stepping away from norms as regards family and societal structures, and from our own perspective of a Western world of increased singledom and solitude we can readily identify with concerns that are both timeless and universal. Despite the darkness that fuelled him and the suffering through which Kierkegaard found his own voice, Kierkegaard provides us with a sense of solace. We can take comfort in knowing that the doubts and conflicting sentiments that now plague us too – with a deep sense of overwhelming bewilderment, apathy and confusion – were similarly (yet in a different context) felt by a man whose ability to translate these thoughts into words, has made us realise their long-lasting importance and applicability.

EXISTENTIALIST ADVICE TO GUIDE US THROGH DIFFICULT TIMES

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If we are to survive relatively unscathed through this pandemic turmoil, the end of which we cannot foresee, with, if not our body then at least our mind, intact, then what we now experience must be carefully reflected on and translated into a moment of stillness and peaceful observation as far as possible – an internalising of ideas and a stoic coping under external pressure. Kierkegaard, who once wrote that “[w]however has learnt to be anxious in the right way, has learnt the ultimate” (Johal 2021) talks of us moving through stages or spheres of our existence and teaches us that pain and suffering are unavoidable and recurring phases of life. By opening our minds and integrating these sentiments into our way of being and thinking we may be better equipped to accept – and perhaps even embrace – the uncertainty it is to be alive in 2021.

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Existentialism – News, Research and Analysis – The Conversation – page 1

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EXISTENTIALISM TODAY: COVID-19, THE PANDEMIC AND THE PLAGUE The pain, suffering and anguish that fuel Kierkegaard’s existentialist oeuvre and that he highlights as intrinsic parts of the human condition – as unavoidable emotions relating to being alive and living life fully, including the unhappiness that he regarded as a condition, not a vocation (Kirsch 2020) – have during our pandemic times of Covid 19; an age of ‘understanding and reflection, without passion’ (Robinson and Zarate 2013, 95) come to a head and seemingly become further exacerbated. The pandemic, now in its third year after its first ripple effects were triggered by a discovery in Wuhan November 2019 that sent us right into a surreal, darkly cinematic reality, keeps sending shock waves across the globe now that we face a number of mutations or strands of the virus. As nations struggle to secure enough dosages of a vaccine (we are not yet able to predict if there would be any long-term benefits derived from the vaccines available or which version is the ‘best’), our attempts to defend ourselves against this virus may ultimately be futile. In the midst of the external turmoil and as we witness, helplessly, rising death tolls in countries lacking the infrastructure to keep the virus at bay and where any attempts to eradicate it within national borders seem pointless given the sheer size of the population and the pre-existing numerous societal issues already dealt, including a health sector under pressure long before this virus hit, citizens feel acutely vulnerable both physically and mentally – the loss of control also mentally destabilizing. Clinical psychologist Sarb Johal notes that [f]or existentialists, an existential crisis is considered to be a journey, a necessary experience and a complex phenomenon. It comes from an awareness of our own freedoms and life will end for you one day. That journey may reveal to us that where there was structure and familiarity, now there is unfamiliarity, a sense of discomfort, and a feeling like somehow, things don’t fit so well anymore. (Johal 2021)

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The existentialist aspects of our pandemic reality springs from a creeping sensation that the anxiety we feel goes way beyond that which we may have got ‘used to’ – and what was once considered ‘normal’ has now entered the realm of the abnormal. The fear and anguish we now feel as uncertainty takes over, seems to have doubled in strength and we are acutely aware of our own mortality. And yet, despite the notion of walking of quicksand at a time when the past drifts away even if it is not entirely relegated to the corners of oblivion and we try to remember a time before this, while the future is impossible to predict, Kierkegaard provides us with some hope when he argues that “life can only be understood backward, but it has to be lived forward” (Kirsch 2020). And the late Zygmunt Bauman argues, in turn, that we have long lived in fluid times or in an age of uncertainty where we are confronted with a series of challenges never before encountered (with reference to Bauman, 2007). His words, too, are readily applicable to our 2021 pandemic (sur)reality; observations that are astute and timeless. Bauman and his many dystopic texts were often written in a post-postmodern light where his discourse on the fluidity of our times suggest that we are losing touch with the past and that we dwell uncertainly and precariously in the present and chase an undefined goal in the undistinguishable future. We are members of a “hunter’s utopia” where citizens are engaged in an individual postmodern hunt into an uncertain future and belonging to a collective would rather hold you back than facilitate the process of moving forward”) (Bauman as paraphrased by Holmqvist 2018)

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The Lily of the Field and the Bird of the Air

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But what if we take a step back at this moment of madness, a largely unprecedented era of a mutating, shapeshifting virus? It is at this time of unknowing where we must find a way forward and take decisions, whatever these decisions may be. A less well-known, ‘smaller’ book that directly followed existential masterpiece Either/Or , is Kierkegaard’s brief yet reflective The Lily of the Field and the Bird of the Air (1849). It may hold the key to how we should act today in order for us to be able to see the bigger picture and start to feel alive again even if the pandemic and its many new strands still rages outside our windows. In all its apparent simplicity, The Lily of the Field and the Bird of the Air –with Kierkegaard himself calling it “[t]his little book” and adding that “[ i ]t wishes to remain in concealment just as it came into existence clandestinely – a little flower concealed in the great forest” (Kierkegaard 2016, 3 – or. 1849)– provides us with a reflective way forward in its many edifying poetic and natural metaphors. Equally so honest and to the point, this short text also contains observations that stress the need for us to accept the unacceptable. And we are reminded that: “… the child never looks for an evasion or an excuse, for the child understands the frightful truth that there is no evasion or excuse, there is no hiding place, neither in heaven nor on earth, neither in the parlor nor in the garden, where it could hide from this “You shall.” (Kierkegaard 2016, 14– or. 1849)

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The anxiety from the past is gone as it was more commonly triggered by external crisis and pressure not stemming from within ourselves. A s we now move towards greater simplicity by scaling it down to the mere basics during an existential Covid crisis that highlights what really matters and how dependent we are on human interconnectedness, we experience another type of anxiety as we struggle for meaning and thereby move towards a stage of enhanced authenticity – as argued by clinical psychologist Dr Sarb Johal in his pertinent article on the existentialist aspects of the current pandemic. In truth, what we now experience is a new kind of anxiety; one that feels “ different, deeper, and beyond perhaps your usual fear or anxiety about day-to-day troubles. This feels more existential.” (Johal 2021). De Beauvoir already summed it up perfectly in her, so we realise, timeless Wartime Diary when, haunted by the traumas of WWII, she gives words to her sense of dread and hopelessness : “I felt myself caught in a trap, tossed about in space and time, without a future, without hope…. A great cataclysm had passed through, not one that devastates the earth and leaves everything to be rebuilt, but on the contrary, one that leaves the world intact but destroys humanity.“ (de Beauvoir as quoted in McWeeny 2020)

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As well noted by McWeeny with regard to Simone de Beauvoir and existentialist concerns, “tropes of other texts of the period “ nausea, nothingness, brokenness, nonsense, no exit, blood, terror, the stranger, the fall, the plague” [not surprisingly many draw comparisons between our current era and Orwell’s 1984 and, more importantly in the context of the current paper, Camus’ The Plague ] are linked to the “uncertainty inherent in human experience”. ( McWeeny 2020)

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On final reflection, if we create a space for philosophy in our lives and allow silence and contemplation to still our frenzied thoughts, then that is where we may find God as a higher power that walks beside us yet who gives us enough space and independence as to ultimately reassess our situation and choose a path forward that is informed by a time where everything changed, nothing was the same and where we were forced to look within and appreciate the value of ‘less is more’. And with that we may find a new sense of wisdom: “For as the fear of God … is the beginning of wisdom, so is silence the beginning of the fear of God”. ( Kierkeegaard The Lilly of the Field and the Bird of the Air , 35). Fear must not be feared. Rather, it is a feeling that must be embraced as a way to move to the next level of our very much existentialist new existence. And if we conquer our fears and are left with nothing to fear, imagine just how far we will have come; more alert, more discerning and more acutely aware of what it means to be alive.

Concluding comments

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Nature Images, Pictures, Photos - Nature Photographs | Shutterstock

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Solar Orbiter’s first views of the Sun

Credit: EASA 2020

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SELECT REFERENCES:

Aho , Kevin. 2020. Existentialism (second edition). Cambridge, UK: Polity Press. Bauman, Zygmunt. 2007. Liquid Times: Living in an Age of Uncertainty . Cambridge, UK: Polity Press. Carlisle, Clare. 2020. Philosopher of the Heart: The Restless Life of Søren Kierkegaard . UK: Penguin Books. First published by Allen Lane, 2019. Cline, Austin. 2019. “Ethical Individualism: Themes and Ideas in Existentialist Thought”. Learn Religions; Atheism and Agnosticism. June 25, 2019. https://www.learnreligions.com/ethical-individualism-249957 De Beauvoir, Simone. 2020 (June 29, 1947). What is Existentialism ? UK: Penguin Books (first published as ‘ Qu’est-ce que l’existentialisme ? In France- Amériques 59). Holmqvist, Jytte. 2018. “The End of Utopia as We Know It? Zygmunt Bauman’s Take on Our Contemporary Times”. The European Conference on Media, Communication & Film (IAFOR) . Brighton, England. Official Conference Proceedings. Hong, Howard V., and Edna H. (eds). 1978. The Essential Kierkegaard . Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press. Johal, Sarb . 2021. “ Covid is an existential crisis that comes from an awareness of your own freedoms”. The Guardian : News, New Zealand. 30 Jan. 2021. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/jan/30/covid-is-an-existential-crisis-that-comes-from-an-awareness-of-your-own-freedoms

Aho , Kevin. 2020. Existentialism (second edition). Cambridge, UK: Polity Press. Bauman, Zygmunt. 2007. Liquid Times: Living in an Age of Uncertainty . Cambridge, UK: Polity Press. Carlisle, Clare. 2020. Philosopher of the Heart: The Restless Life of Søren Kierkegaard . UK: Penguin Books. First published by Allen Lane, 2019. Cline, Austin. 2019. “Ethical Individualism: Themes and Ideas in Existentialist Thought”. Learn Religions; Atheism and Agnosticism. June 25, 2019. https://www.learnreligions.com/ethical-individualism-249957 De Beauvoir, Simone. 2020 (June 29, 1947). What is Existentialism ? UK: Penguin Books (first published as ‘ Qu’est-ce que l’existentialisme ? In France- Amériques 59). Holmqvist, Jytte. 2018. “The End of Utopia as We Know It? Zygmunt Bauman’s Take on Our Contemporary Times”. The European Conference on Media, Communication & Film (IAFOR) . Brighton, England. Official Conference Proceedings. Hong, Howard V., and Edna H. (eds). 1978. The Essential Kierkegaard . Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press. Johal, Sarb . 2021. “ Covid is an existential crisis that comes from an awareness of your own freedoms”. The Guardian : News, New Zealand. 30 Jan. 2021. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/jan/30/covid-is-an-existential-crisis-that-comes-from-an-awareness-of-your-own-freedoms

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Kierkegaard, Søren . 2004 (1843). Either/Or : A Fragment of Life . UK: Penguin Books. Kierkegaard - . 2009. Fear and Trembling (translated by Alastair Hannay ). London: Penguin Books. Kierkegaard - . 2009. Repetition and Philosophical Crumbs (translated by M.G. Piety). Oxford: Oxford University Press. Kierkegaard - . 2016 (1849). (trans. by Bruce H. Kirmmse ). The Lily of the Field and the Bird of the Air . Princeton: Princeton University Press. Kierkegaard - . 2019 (1846). The Present Age: On the Death of Rebellion. Republished in paperback by Resistance Library, Harper Perennial. Kirsch, Adam. 2020. “ S ø ren Kierkegaard’s struggle with himself”. The New Yorker : Books. May 11 2020 issue: https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2020/05/11/soren-kierkegaards-struggle-with-himself McWeeny , Jennifer. 2020. “ A New Existentialism for Infectious Times: Council for European Studies: EuropeNow Daily . April 21, 2020. https://www.europenowjournal.org/2020/04/27/a-new-existentialism-for-infectious-times/ Strawser, Michael. 2006. “Gifts of silence from Kierkegaard and Derrida”. Soundings: An Interdisciplinary Journal , Spring/ Summer 2006: 89, no. ½: 55-72. Westphal, Merold . 2014. Kierkegaard’s Concept of Faith . Michigan, US: Eerdmans.

Kierkegaard, Søren . 2004 (1843). Either/Or : A Fragment of Life . UK: Penguin Books. Kierkegaard - . 2009. Fear and Trembling (translated by Alastair Hannay ). London: Penguin Books. Kierkegaard - . 2009. Repetition and Philosophical Crumbs (translated by M.G. Piety). Oxford: Oxford University Press. Kierkegaard - . 2016 (1849). (trans. by Bruce H. Kirmmse ). The Lily of the Field and the Bird of the Air . Princeton: Princeton University Press. Kierkegaard - . 2019 (1846). The Present Age: On the Death of Rebellion. Republished in paperback by Resistance Library, Harper Perennial. Kirsch, Adam. 2020. “ S ø ren Kierkegaard’s struggle with himself”. The New Yorker : Books. May 11 2020 issue: https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2020/05/11/soren-kierkegaards-struggle-with-himself McWeeny , Jennifer. 2020. “ A New Existentialism for Infectious Times: Council for European Studies: EuropeNow Daily . April 21, 2020. https://www.europenowjournal.org/2020/04/27/a-new-existentialism-for-infectious-times/ Strawser, Michael. 2006. “Gifts of silence from Kierkegaard and Derrida”. Soundings: An Interdisciplinary Journal , Spring/ Summer 2006: 89, no. ½: 55-72. Westphal, Merold . 2014. Kierkegaard’s Concept of Faith . Michigan, US: Eerdmans.