Journal of the History of Philosophy 46 (3):pp. 488-490 (2008)

Rebecca Bamford
Queen's University, Belfast
Readers might be forgiven raised eyebrows on first noting the title of Julian Young's book. Young's chief and surprising claim is that, even though Nietzsche "rejects the God of Christianity, he is not anti-religious," and that he is " above all a religious thinker" , whose atheism only applies in the case of the Christian God , and whose early "religious communitarianism" or "Wagnerianism" persist throughout the texts . Young defines Nietzsche's early thought as communitarian by virtue of concern with the flourishing of the community as a whole, and as religious given Nietzsche's view that a people cannot flourish or indeed truly be a community without a "festive, communal" religion . Nietzsche is seen as broadly in step with the anti-modernist tradition of "Volkish" thinking in nineteenth-century Germany, but as rejecting "genuinely wicked" aspects of Volkish thinking that might prompt his identification as the "godfather of Nazism" . While tempting even to Young himself, however, his discussion of Nietzsche cannot simply be summarized by the Heideggerian "slogan" that only a god can save us
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DOI 10.1353/hph.0.0035
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