Nietzsche's Philosophical Psychology

In John Richardson & Ken Gemes (eds.), Oxford Handbook of Nietzsche. Oxford University Press. pp. 727-755 (2013)
Abstract
Freud claimed that the concept of drive is "at once the most important and the most obscure element of psychological research." It is hard to think of a better proof of Freud's claim than the work of Nietzsche, which provides ample support for the idea that the drive concept is both tremendously important and terribly obscure. Although Nietzsche's accounts of agency and value everywhere appeal to drives, the concept has not been adequately explicated. I remedy this situation by providing an account of drives. I argue that Nietzschean drives are dispositions that generate evaluative orientations, in part by affecting perceptual saliences. In addition, I show that drive psychology has important implications for contemporary accounts of reflective agency. Contemporary philosophers often endorse a claim that has its origins in Locke and Kant: self-conscious agents are capable of reflecting on and thereby achieving a distance from their motives; therefore, these motives do not determine what the agent will do. Nietzsche's drive psychology shows that the inference in the preceding sentence is illegitimate. The drive psychology articulates a way in which motives can determine the agent's action by influencing the course of the agent's reflective deliberations. An agent who reflects on a motive and decides whether to act on it may, all the while, be surreptitiously guided by the very motive upon which he is reflecting. I show how this point complicates traditional models of the role of reflection in agency.
Keywords Nietzsche  drive  instinct  philosophical psychology  agency
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199534647.013.0032
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
Edit this record
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Mark as duplicate
Request removal from index
Revision history
Download options
Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 32,634
External links

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.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Zarathustra’s Metaethics.Neil Sinhababu - 2015 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 45 (3):278-299.
Inner Opacity. Nietzsche on Introspection and Agency.Mattia Riccardi - 2015 - Inquiry : An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 58 (3):221-243.
The Most Agreeable of All Vices: Nietzsche as Virtue Epistemologist.Mark Alfano - 2013 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 21 (4):767-790.
Normativity for Nietzschean Free Spirits.Simon Robertson - 2011 - Inquiry : An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 54 (6):591 - 613.
Nietzsche's Fourfold Conception of the Self.Robert Miner - 2011 - Inquiry : An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 54 (4):337-360.

View all 7 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Nietzsche's Theory of the Will.Brian Leiter - 2005 - In Ken Gemes & Simon May (eds.), Philosophical Topics. Oxford University Press. pp. 119-137.
The Concept of Unified Agency in Nietzsche, Plato, and Schiller.Paul Katsafanas - 2011 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 49 (1):87-113.
Nietzsche's Daybreak.Carl B. Sachs - 2008 - Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy 13 (1):81-100.
Nietzsche on Agency and Self-Ignorance.Paul Katsafanas - 2012 - Journal of Nietzsche Studies 43 (1):5-17.
Deriving Ethics From Action: A Nietzschean Version of Constitutivism.Paul Katsafanas - 2011 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 83 (3):620-660.
Activity and Passivity in Reflective Agency.Paul Katsafanas - 2011 - In Russ Shafer-Landau (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaethics Volume 6. Oxford University Press. pp. 219.
Value, Affect, and Drive.Paul Katsafanas - 2016 - In Peter Kail & Manuel Dries (eds.), Nietzsche on Mind and Nature. Oxford University Press.
Added to PP index
2009-08-13

Total downloads
302 ( #12,752 of 2,236,173 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
12 ( #38,725 of 2,236,173 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature