“Sounding out idols”: Knowledge, History and Metaphysics in Human, All Too Human and Twilight of the Idols
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
In Volker Gerhard & Renate Reschke (eds.), Nietzscheforschung, vol. 16 (2009)
Twilight of the Idols has a main role in Nietzsche’s work, since it represents the opening writing of his project of Transvaluation of all values. The task of this essay is sounding out idols, i.e. to disclose their lack of content, their being hollow. The theme of eternal idols is in this work strictly related to the idea of a ‘true’ world and, consequently, a study on this latter notion can contribute to a better comprehension of what does that emptiness mean and which is the way that Nietzsche wants to follow to set his thought free from any metaphysical heritage. The analysis of the notion of truth Nietzsche concerns with in Twilight of the Idols takes us back to the content of his early writings, when he gives the first sketches of his theory of knowledge. The perspective he exposed in the ‘70s is constructed on the basis of Schopenhauer’s philosophy, that Nietzsche merges with the main ideas of Lange, Spir and other neo-Kantians. The outcome of his reflections on this matter is an evolutionary epistemology, a view that leads Nietzsche to define the historical reconstruction as the only resource through which the fact that concepts are mere thoughts gradually evolved can be point out. These observations correspond in many ways to what the Austrian physicist Ernst Mach wrote in his works, and one can say that Nietzsche agrees with his “anti-metaphysical intent”, i.e. his criticizing a thought still depending on “concepts which we forgot how we’ve reached”. With my paper I’ll try to show that Nietzsche wage his war against metaphysics with the theoretical ‘weapons’ he prepared in the ‘70s, indeed that his last attack to western knowledge arises from some contents he exposed in Human, All Too Human. In this text Nietzsche reflected on the mechanisms of language and world’s representation, and connected human knowledge with the overall development of organic beings. Moreover, in his work from 1878 the philosopher presented a comparison between “metaphysische Philosophie” and “historische Philosophie”, an idea that cannot be found in the following writings, but that comes up again in the Twilight of the Idols. Indeed, in this work Nietzsche repeats his complaining philosopher’s “lack of historical sense” he dealt with in the opening pages of Human, All Too Human, and he reflects on the kind of inquiry western thinkers should adopt to set themselves free from the fixed forms of metaphysics. Thus, Nietzsche’s observation about the role of history in philosophy testifies the connection between this main works, and allow us to define the way he wants to follow to carry his critic to eternal idols out and, in doing so, to show the way forward to his last thoughts.
|Keywords||F. Nietzsche Twilight of the Idols History and metaphisics|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Daw-Nay Evans (2010). Socrates as Nietzsche's Decadent in Twilight of the Idols. Philosophy and Literature 34 (2):340-347.
Tom Stern (2009). Nietzsche, Freedom and Writing Lives. Arion 17 (1):85-110.
Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1998/2008). Twilight of the Idols, or, How to Philosophize with a Hammer. Oxford University Press.
Friedrich Nietzsche (2004/2008). Twilight of the Idols ;. Dover Publications.
Robert B. Pippin (ed.) (2012). Introductions to Nietzsche. Cambridge University Press.
Daniel W. Conway (1997). Nietzsche's Dangerous Game: Philosophy in the Twilight of the Idols. Cambridge University Press.
Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1968/2008). Twilight of the Idols. Harmondsworth, Penguin.
Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1909/1974). The Complete Works of Friedrich Nietzsche: The First Complete and Authorised English Translation. Gordon Press.
Jessica N. Berry (2011). Guest Editor's Introduction: Nietzsche's Ancient History. Journal of Nietzsche Studies 42 (1):4-6.
Brian Leiter (2009). Nietzsche's Theory of the Will. In Ken Gemes & Simon May (eds.), Nietzsche on Freedom and Autonomy. Oxford University Press. 119-137.
George P. Klubertanz (1971). "'Twilight of the Idols' and 'The Anti-Christ,'" by Friedrich Nietzsche, Trans. With Introd. And Commentary by R. J. Hollingdale. [REVIEW] Modern Schoolman 48 (3):324-324.
Brian Leiter (2007). Nietzsche's Theory of the Will. Philosophers' Imprint 7 (7):1-15.
Pietro Gori (2009). The Usefulness of Substances. Knowledge, Science and Metaphysics in Nietzsche and Mach. Nietzsche Studien 38:111-155.
Robert C. Solomon & Kathleen Marie Higgins (eds.) (1988). Reading Nietzsche. Oxford University Press.
Scott Jenkins (2011). What Does Nietzsche Owe Thucydides? Journal of Nietzsche Studies 42 (1):32-50.
Added to index2011-10-07
Total downloads144 ( #6,710 of 1,140,333 )
Recent downloads (6 months)53 ( #1,660 of 1,140,333 )
How can I increase my downloads?