Best translation of Either/Or
October 4, 2020 4:09 PM   Subscribe

What is the best translation of Kierkegaard’s Either/Or for someone coming to it cold and not for a class? I’m looking for something with reasonably accessible language, and I haven’t read any book-length Kierkegaard.

One of my favorite authors just announced that her next book is called Either/Or and is about two characters who pursue the aesthetic and ethical lives inspired by Kierkegaard. I would like to read this before her book comes out so I can better understand it.
posted by pxe2000 to Media & Arts (7 answers total)
Best answer: Between the two most used translations, the Hannay is abridged, but easier to read, but Hong's is not just the entire work, but adds a ton of supplementary information for historical context and pieces from Kierkegaard's notes. If I had to chose between them, I'd go with Hong's.
posted by General Malaise at 4:15 PM on October 4, 2020 [1 favorite]

Extremely bizarre that you posted this question, because I just bought Either/Or a few days ago. I did a couple hours of reading about the various translations, and it seemed like the Hongs' translation was the best. Each part is its own book, and they were pricey, but I'm looking forward to diving in.
posted by vocativecase at 4:34 PM on October 4, 2020

I'm curious, can you tell us who the author is of the upcoming novel?
posted by bertran at 7:10 PM on October 4, 2020 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: bertran: Elif Batuman
posted by pxe2000 at 5:03 AM on October 5, 2020

Best answer: Any chance you could link to the announcement?
posted by Dwardles at 5:29 AM on October 5, 2020

Response by poster: Hey Dwardles! It’s here:
posted by pxe2000 at 1:44 PM on October 5, 2020 [2 favorites]

Best answer: Big fan of the Walter Lowrie translation, the Hong one also excellent.
posted by riverlife at 9:18 PM on October 6, 2020

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