Nietzsche on the Superficiality of Consciousness

In Manuel Dries (ed.), Nietzsche on Consciousness and the Embodied Mind. De Gryuter (forthcoming)
Abstract
Abstract: Nietzsche’s famously wrote that “consciousness is a surface” (EH, Why I am so clever, 9: 97). The aim of this paper is to make sense of this quite puzzling contention—Superficiality, for short. In doing this, I shall focus on two further claims—both to be found in Gay Science 354—which I take to substantiate Nietzsche’s endorsement of Superficiality. The first claim is that consciousness is superfluous—which I call the “superfluousness claim” (SC). The second claim is that consciousness is the source of some deep falsification—which I call the “falsification claim” (FC). I shall start by considering Nietzsche’s notion of consciousness. Here, I shall argue that the kind of consciousness he is concerned with is in fact self-consciousness and that he put forward a higher-order theory of it. Then, I shall address the two claims. Regarding (FC), my proposal will be that, according to Nietzsche, the content of (self-)conscious mental states is falsified in virtue of its being articulated propositionally. Regarding (SC), I shall claim that it is best read as a weak version of epiphenomenalism about conscious causation. In addressing both points, I shall discuss in particular the influential reading of Nietzsche’s theory of consciousness offered by Katsafanas (2005).
Keywords Nietzsche  Consciousness
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index Translate to english
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 9,360
External links
  •   Try with proxy.
  • Through your library Configure
    References found in this work BETA

    No references found.

    Citations of this work BETA
    Similar books and articles
    Mattia Riccardi (2013). Nietzsche's Sensualism. European Journal of Philosophy 21 (2):219-257.
    Paul Katsafanas (2012). Nietzsche on Agency and Self-Ignorance. Journal of Nietzsche Studies 43 (1):5-17.
    Kenneth R. Westphal (1984). Was Nietzsche a Cognitivist? Journal of the History of Philosophy 22 (3):343-363.
    James I. Porter (2010). Theater of the Absurd. American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 84 (2):313-336.
    Michael V. Antony (2001). Is 'Consciousness' Ambiguous? Journal of Consciousness Studies 8 (2):19-44.
    Analytics

    Monthly downloads

    Added to index

    2012-09-12

    Total downloads

    18 ( #78,313 of 1,089,047 )

    Recent downloads (6 months)

    5 ( #20,082 of 1,089,047 )

    How can I increase my downloads?

    My notes
    Sign in to use this feature


    Discussion
    Start a new thread
    Order:
    There  are no threads in this forum
    Nothing in this forum yet.