Kursussøgning, efter- og videreuddannelse – Københavns Universitet

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Kursussøgning, efter- og videreuddannelse

DCC Søren Kierkegaard and the Challenge of Existence

Practical information
Study year 2016/2017
Programme level Bachelor
Bachelor choice
Course responsible
  • Per Methner Rasmussen (3-7f7c814f77847c3d7a843d737a)
  • SAXO-Institute - Archaeology, Ethnology, Greek & Latin, History
Course number: HDCB01053U

Course content

Kierkegaard and the Challenge of Existence is a course in English for all International Students offered each semester. Søren Kierkegaard is a fascinating and famous Danish philosopher/writer – in fact, the only Danish thinker of undisputed international rank and legend. Apart from being considered as the “father of existentialism”, his unorthodox ideas are discussed in and can be connected to virtually every subject area within the humanities.

Kierkegaard’s works revolve around basic human experiences such as lust, despair, anxiety, love, morality, passion, absurdity and god. In particular, Kierkegaard claimed to present a complete summary of the possible ways in which we can live our lives or exist. At the same time, he analyzed and criticized these ways thoroughly in order to judge to what extent they may give us a true point of orientation.

Every lecture presupposes a short reading of not more than five pages and will provide sufficient room for discussion where we raise fundamental questions such as what we can at all know, how we should at all be and act and what we can at all hope for as finite human beings. It is the past experience and our very stimulus that students from different disciplines profit from one another.

The course also integrates a City Walk, which can be characterized as a walk through Kierkegaard’s odd personal life as well as the screening of the momentous and deeply “Kierkegaardian” Danish movie Breaking the Waves / Lars von Trier.

The lectures do not presuppose specialized knowledge and will introduce the respective themes without jargon. Kierkegaard’s ideas are original and never belong to one genre only, so that the course is indeed eligible to students of all majors. Essays can be composed freely, but need to be submitted in English. To change the exam language to German an exemption is required. Individual student-counseling of the lecturer will be available.


Name of Exam: HDCB01051E Danish Literature and Philosophy in Context of Danish Culture and Society.


Mandatory prerequisites

The course is only offered to exchange and guest students at the University of Copenhagen.

Sign up

Registration form will be available at the beginning of April online at www.culturecourse.ku.dk


Danish Culture Courses


Study Board of Archaeology, Ethnology, Greek & Latin, History

Course type

Single subject courses (day)


Ulrich Martin Knappe


1 semester


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Teaching and learning methods

Lectures and excursions




Category Hours
Lectures 20
Excursions 5
English 25

Exam (HDCB01051E Danish Literature and Philosophy in ...)

Type of assessment

Written assignment
20-25 standard pages. If the student participates actively in a
minimum of 80% of the lectures and excursions, there will be a reduction
of the assignment. With reduction the assignment must be 15-20
standard pages.


All aids allowed

Marking scale

7-point grading scale
Mere information om kurset
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