Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date



Lexington Books


Nietzsche's stature as a philosopher has risen dramatically since his death. His writings increasingly captivate philosophical readers. There are many reasons for this. One reason is the depth of his thought. Philosophers like Aristotle, Kant, or Hegel impress us with the scope and breadth of their thinking. Philosophers like Plato, Descartes, or Berkeley impress us with an original insight that they unfold and elaborate. Nietzsche is different. He thinks deeply. He digs beneath other philosophies. He forces us to look at traditional philosophical assumptions from a different angle. He undermines and subverts them. He opens up the possibility of thinking in radically new ways.

This fascinates us even if we worry about the consequences. We may have believed in those traditional philosophical perspectives. We may regret their collapse. We may wish they could have been defended. But Nietzsche forces us to see them from a new perspective such that it becomes very difficult to return to our old way of understanding things. Nietzsche's depth, his ability to subvert, enchants us even if we rue the consequences.

The first seven chapters of this book attempt to illuminate the depth of Nietzsche's thinking-indeed, to show that it is even more subversive than has been recognized. The eighth chapter asks whether, finally, we must accept Nietzsche's views.

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