Kierkegaard has undoubtedly been an influence on phenomenological thinking, but he has rarely if ever been read as a phenomenologist himself. Recent developments in phenomenology have expanded our conception of the discipline itself and the varieties of experience it can address. Is it possible that Kierkegaard, a canonical figure by any measure, can be reappraised in light of these developments? Or more radically, is it possible that the frontiers of phenomenological investigation were already broached by Kierkegaard even before phenomenology was formally defined by Husserl?
In Kierkegaard as Phenomenologist: An Experiment, Jeffrey Hanson embarks on a project to locate Kierkegaard within the current phenomenological discussion. This work is an experiment inasmuch as the plausibility of the undertaking itself will be determined only by the outcome. Some of the contributors clearly regard it as possible to read Kierkegaard as a phenomenologist. Others plainly do not and will contest the very hypothesis that forms the basis of this experiment.
As with any experiment, the larger discussion will determine its success, but Kierkegaard as Phenomenologist lays the groundwork for two exciting possibilities: first, that Kierkegaard scholarship will be renewed, and second, that the meaning of phenomenology itself will be reconsidered.