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Nietzsche's Conscience: Six Character Studies from the "Genealogy" (Paperback)
  • Nietzsche's Conscience: Six Character Studies from the "Genealogy" (Paperback)
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Nietzsche's Conscience: Six Character Studies from the "Genealogy" (Paperback)

(author)
£23.99
Paperback 176 Pages / Published: 02/12/1998
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Aaron Ridley explores Nietzsche's mature ethical thought as expressed in his masterpiece On the Genealogy of Morals. Taking seriously the use that Nietzsche makes of human types, Ridley arranges his book thematically around the six characters who loom largest in that work-the slave, the priest, the philosopher, the artist, the scientist, and the noble. By elucidating what the Genealogy says about these figures, he achieves a persuasive new assessment of Nietzsche's ethics.

Ridley's intellectually supple interpretation reveals Nietzsche's ethical position to be deeper and more interesting than is often supposed: the relation, for instance, between Nietzsche's ideal of the noble and the ascetic or priestly conscience does not emerge as a stark opposition but as a rich interplay between the tensions inherent in each. Equally, he shows that certain under-appreciated confusions in Nietzsche's thought reveal much about the positive aspects of the philosopher's moral vision.

The only book devoted entirely to the Genealogy, Nietzsche's Conscience offers a sympathetic but tough-minded critical reading of the philosopher's most important work. Delivered in clear and vigorous language and employing a broadly analytical approach, Ridley's commentary makes Nietzsche's reflections on morality more accessible than they have been hitherto.

Publisher: Cornell University Press
ISBN: 9780801485534
Number of pages: 176
Weight: 283 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 10 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

"It is rare these days to come across a first-rate book purportedly on Friedrich Nietzsche's philosophy, of which the first and foremost concern turns out to indeed be the philosophy of Nietzsche."

* Philosophy in Review *

"Nietzsche's Conscience is an important contribution to the reading of Nietzsche. It begins at full tilt."

* Philosophical Quarterly *

"Aaron Ridley brings welcome rigor and refreshing wit to his illuminating readings of Nietzche's On the Genealogy of Morals. Nietzche's Conscience comprises the most probing commentary produced thus far on Nietzche's most challenging philosophical book."

-- Daniel W. Conway, The Pennsylvania State University

"Displaying great stylistic verve and dazzling analytic lucidity, Nietzsche's Conscience brings back to life the discussion of topics that had become rather tired in recent years. On the Genealogy of Morals has emerged as Nietzsche's most important work for our time, and this is the most illuminating and original reading of the book that I have ever seen."

-- Henry Staten, author of Nietzsche's Voice

"Ridley's overall analysis is clear, thorough, insightful, and plausible. Some of his more stimulating explorations are into the 'good bad conscience' (Ridley's label), the distinction between the ascetic ideal and ascetic procedures, perspectivism, and Nietzsche's 'idealism' and 'the last man.' Most impressive is how Ridley links all these together into a well-defended interpretation of the Genealogy which shows why this book still matters to ethical theory."

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