The Untimely Meditations (Thoughts Out of Season Parts I and II)

Front Cover Publishing, Jan 1, 2010 - Philosophy - 174 pages
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Written between 1873 and 1876, The "Untimely Meditations", or "Thoughts out of Season" is a collection of four essays by famed philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. In the first essay 'David Strauss: the Confessor and the Writer', Nietzsche attacks David Strauss's "The Old and the New Faith: A Confession". In the second essay 'On the Use and Abuse of History for Life', Nietzsche presents an alternative way of reading history, one where living life becomes the primary concern. In the third essay 'Schopenhauer as Educator', Nietzsche describes how the philosophic genius of Schopenhauer might bring on a resurgence of German culture. In the fourth and final essay 'Richard Wagner in Bayreuth', Nietzsche investigates the music, drama and personality of Richard Wagner. Nietzsche originally planned this work to comprise thirteen essays but it is suggested that he lost interest in the work after writing just four. In this early philosophical work one can begin to see the development of a brilliant philosophical mind, which would become more evidenced by his later works.

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About the author (2010)

The son of a Lutheran pastor, Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche was born in 1844 in Roecken, Prussia, and studied classical philology at the Universities of Bonn and Leipzig. While at Leipzig he read the works of Schopenhauer, which greatly impressed him. He also became a disciple of the composer Richard Wagner. At the very early age of 25, Nietzsche was appointed professor at the University of Basel in Switzerland. In 1870, during the Franco-Prussian War, Nietzsche served in the medical corps of the Prussian army. While treating soldiers he contracted diphtheria and dysentery; he was never physically healthy afterward. Nietzsche's first book, The Birth of Tragedy Out of the Spirit of Music (1872), was a radical reinterpretation of Greek art and culture from a Schopenhaurian and Wagnerian standpoint. By 1874 Nietzsche had to retire from his university post for reasons of health. He was diagnosed at this time with a serious nervous disorder. He lived the next 15 years on his small university pension, dividing his time between Italy and Switzerland and writing constantly. He is best known for the works he produced after 1880, especially The Gay Science (1882), Thus Spake Zarathustra (1883-85), Beyond Good and Evil (1886), On the Genealogy of Morals (1887), The Antichrist (1888), and Twilight of the Idols (1888). In January 1889, Nietzsche suffered a sudden mental collapse; he lived the last 10 years of his life in a condition of insanity. After his death, his sister published many of his papers under the title The Will to Power. Nietzsche was a radical questioner who often wrote polemically with deliberate obscurity, intending to perplex, shock, and offend his readers. He attacked the entire metaphysical tradition in Western philosophy, especially Christianity and Christian morality, which he thought had reached its final and most decadent form in modern scientific humanism, with its ideals of liberalism and democracy. It has become increasingly clear that his writings are among the deepest and most prescient sources we have for acquiring a philosophical understanding of the roots of 20th-century culture.

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