LOVE FAITH CHOICE - Siri Hustvedt, Pascal Bruckner, René Redzepi and Paul Holdengräber

Sunday 5 May 2013 at 16:00
Paul Holdengräber in conversation with the American writer Siri Hustvedt and the famous french philosopher Pascal Bruckner
Paul Holdengräber in conversation with the American writer Siri Hustvedt and the famous french philosopher Pascal Bruckner

Kierkegaard in three international conversations


Søren Kierkegaard’s thinking belongs to the whole world. The Royal Library is therefore celebrating his 200th anniversary by making him part of the international conversation. With Kierkegaard’s thinking as the sounding-board four world names will be interviewed live about their respective métiers.

These artists, thinkers and innovators were selected and will be interviewed by Mr. Paul Holdengräber, an avid Kierkegaard reader and the leader of New York Public Library’s famous live scene, LIVE from the NYPL.

The audience will be led through three important concepts in the work of the great philosopher in three conversations: Love/seduction, Faith and Choice.

The famous guests that Holdengräber will talk to individually are the french philosopher Pascal Bruckner (on Faith), the american author Siri Hustvedt (on Choice) and Danish Noma-chef René Redzepi (on Love).

There is an intermission in the middle of the programme where the audience will be offered wine and chocolate.

Read more on the three names under this and
read more on LOVE FAITH CHOICE and Paul Holdengräber

Siri Hustvedt – thinking, and a sense of beauty.

The 58-year-old American author Siri Hustvedt has said that it was her encounter as a 13-year-old with literary classics such as Charles Dickens and Charlotte Brontë which caused her to dream of becoming a writer.

What’s special about Hustvedt is that she wasn’t just inspired to write literary fiction - she simultaneously followed a more academic or analytical path, which is something which is clearly reflected in her essays. A theoretical approach, then, which also led to her writing her PhD thesis on language and identity in the novels of Charles Dickens - while introducing her along the way to thinkers such as Søren Kierkegaard, Sigmund Freud, Jacques Lacan and Paul Ricoeur.

There are therefore plenty of ideas and intellectual considerations underpinning Hustvedt’s writings, which began in 1982 with the poetry collection Reading to You; and continued with her first novel, The Blindfold, published in 1992. Since then there have followed, amongst others, The Enchantment of Lily Dahl (1996), The Shaking Woman or A History of My Nerves (2009), and The Summer Without Men (2011).

Hustvedt is married to fellow author Paul Auster, and has pointed out that while Auster often has loneliness as a key theme, she writes typically about the individual person’s inner battles - about identity, individuality and perception. It’s an approach which, coupled with her sensual prose, led to conclude that she is closer to the two film directors David Lynch and Lars von Trier than to many other writers.

Siri Hustvedts latest project is the essay collection Living, Thinking, Looking, which came out in autumn 2012. Reviewing the collection in Politiken, Lise Garsdal summed up the collection thus: “ these essays, Hustvedt combines the researchers tenacity, the analysts acuity, and the artists sense of beauty.

Pascal Bruckner - intellectual social critic.

As an author, essayist, social commentator and philosopher, the 64-year-old Pascal Bruckner is in many ways the embodiment of intellectual France.

His widest recognition probably came through his 1981 novel Lunes de fiel, later adapted by Roman Polanski as the film Bitter Moon in 1992, with a cast including Hugh Grant and Kristin Scott Thomas.

In the longer-term, though, Bruckner has made himself known first and foremost as a philosophically-oriented social commentator, located on the more conservative wing of the political landscape: in the French presidential election of 2007, along with likeminded intellectuals such as André Glucksmann and Alain Finkielkraut, he announced his support for Nicolas Sarkozy.

As a polemical intellectual, Bruckner, in his essay Le Sanglot de l'Homme blanc (‘The white man’s tears’), amongst other works, criticized the mixture of pity and scorn which characterizes the West’s relationship to the third world; while in Fanatisme de l'Apocalypse (‘Fanaticism of the Apocalypse’), he pointed to our era’s fast-proliferating climate and environmental research as being the new fanaticism.

In 2007, and with great impact, Bruckner entered the emotive debate about multicultural society with his essay Enlightenment fundamentalism or racism of the anti-racists? - in which, alongside other arguments, he defended Ayaan Hirsi Ali and her viewpoint.

“People feel secure when they are afraid,” said Pascal Bruckner in the autumn of 2012, in an interview with Jyllands Posten. “Since the beginning of the 21st century, fear has been the dominant emotion of the Western world. It has become the enlightened citizens’ common denominator. The West is afraid of everything; of Islam, and, especially, of itself.

René Redzepi – the unpretentious pioneer who sparked the world’s interest in Nordic Cuisine. 

In many ways, 35-year-old head chef René Redzepi is the typical child of a modern, globalized world - he was born in Copenhagen, to an immigrant Macedonian father (with Albanian roots) and a Danish mother.

In spite of this - or maybe because of it - Redzepi earned an international reputation when he took the restaurant Noma to gastronomy’s uppermost heights - by taking it back to its roots, both nationally and locally.

Redzepi became the successful and much sought-after pioneer of the New Nordic Cuisine; and Noma was named the World’s Best Restaurant for three years running, in 2010, 2011 and 2012.

In 2012, Redzepi appeared in the Time Magazine list of the 100 most influential people of the year, for the following stated reasons: his principles, passion, creativity, sense of freedom, and willingness to take risks.

Big, prestigious words. René Redzepi himself has put it more simply: “For me, the art of cooking is something which is totally transparent and without pretension. It is honest and generous, and there is something original and true about it.”

It’s a viewpoint which has taken Redzepi far. As a teenager, he delivered newspapers on foot to help with the family’s finances. Later, gastronomy came into his life almost by accident. Journeying via restaurants such as Pierre André in Copenhagen, The French Laundry in New York, Jardin des Sens in Montpellier and El Bulli in Barcelona, he found his very own place at Noma - and at the top of the world.

Standard  140 kr.
Student 100 kr.

Pre-sale at the reception desk in The Black Diamond and at Billetlugen.

The event is held in english

The event is produced in cooperation with The Programme Council for KIERKEGAARD 2013 in relation to the conference Kierkegaard Reconsidered in a Global World 6th-8th of May and  Beckett Fonden, Søren Kierkegaard Forskningscentret, Udenrigsministeriet, Kulturministeriet, Kulturstyrelsen
Embassy of the United States, Copenhagen.