Slave morality, socrates, and the bushmen: A reading of the first essay of on the genealogy of morals
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 58 (4):745-779 (1998)
This paper raises three questions: (1) Can Nietzsche provide a satisfactory account of how the slave revolt could have begun to "poison the consciences" of masters? (2) Does Nietzsche's affinity for "master values" preclude him from acknowledging claims of justice that rest upon a sense of equality among human beings? and (3) How does Nietzsche's story fare when looked on as (at least in part) an empirical hypothesis? The first question is answered in the affirmative, the second in the negative, and the third with the verdict "quite well". Nietzsche's interpretation of Socrates is held to vindicate the affirmative answer to question one; his conception of nobility as spontaneously self-affirming to justify the negative answer to question two, and historical, anthropological and etymological evidence to support the favorable answer to question three
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