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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter October 24, 2013

Why a Danish Golden Age? Structural Holes in 19th Century Copenhagen

Thomas Gilbert

Abstract

Situating historical intellectuals within a wider Danish “Golden Age” is common in Kierkegaard research, but there are few explanations for why this period occurred and why it would develop as a single cultural entity. I review a prominent example in the secondary literature, Bruce Kirmmse’s Kierkegaard in Golden Age Denmark, and then present, through the use of structural hole theory, an alternate interpretation of the Golden Age’s origins and cultural makeup-one that portrays it as both intellectually heterogeneous yet structurally cohesive. Furthermore, I suggest that the evolution of Kierkegaard’s pseudonymous authorship, rather than being exogenous to this cultural system, was definitively shaped by the social processes that produced the Danish Golden Age.

Published Online: 2013-10-24
Published in Print: 2013-10

© 2013 by Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co.

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