You may know Kim Kierkegaardashian from the darkly funny and wonderfully irreverent @KimKierkegaard Twitter feed, or you may be wondering, What’s a Kierkegaardashian? Kierkegaardashian’s philosophical insights are a marriage of the observations of Kim Kardashian West and the existential musings of Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard.
Kierkegaardashian’s first book, My Beautiful Despair, takes our expectations about the frivolous—fashion, social media, beauty routines, multimillionaires’ indiscriminate spending—and pairs them with some of the most complicated questions we can ask ourselves—What is existence? How do we confront our own mortality? Where do we fall on the spectrum of good and evil?
Because this book is about meditating on life’s contradictions and questions that feel unanswerable, it seemed appropriate to look within myself to respond to some queries about this seminal work.
The self interviews the self
What is your favorite thing about this book?
Hands down, its deceptive simplicity. Its insights—about depth and shallowness, about truth and illusion—quietly sneak up on you. And I love that it isn’t just a book for Kardashian fans (who will find a lot to love about it), but also for readers of Kierkegaard, and devotees of satire.
What would readers be surprised to learn about this book?
It’s illustrated! Dash Shaw created the art for My Beautiful Despair, and his illustrations are stark, moody, atmospheric, and existential in equal measure. The art, like the philosophy, is understated yet complex; the longer you study each illustration, the more it illuminates the observation it accompanies. Check out some of the pages below!
Which teaching resonates with you the most?
There is one insight in this book that I have thought about nearly every day since we got the manuscript: “I’m up so early. Do I work out or try to go back to sleep? My honest opinion is this—I will regret both.” I struggle to think of something that has ever resonated with me more.