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Nietzsche: Philosopher, Psychologist, Antichrist Paperback – 21 Feb 1975


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Product details

  • Paperback: 552 pages
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press; 4Rev Ed edition (21 Feb. 1975)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0691019835
  • ISBN-13: 978-0691019833
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 15.5 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 389,804 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"Mr. Kaufmann has produced what may be called the definitive study of Nietzsche's life and thought-an informed, scholarly, and lustrous work."--The New Yorker

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Nietzsche's family background offers a striking contrast to his later thought. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

37 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Gerard on 20 Nov. 2001
Format: Paperback
Well, what can I say ... this is an absolute masterpiece (fourth edition: thoroughly revised etc.).
Kaufmann is acknowledged in many quarters as an authoritative source as far as Nietzsche's work is concerned. In this book he provides, in addition to valuable critical analyses of much of Nietzsche's work, important backround information that proves extremely valuable; it facilitates early understanding of Nietzsche's work proper.
As an avid Nietzsche reader, I unreservedly recommend this book, as, indeed, I do with all of Kaufmann's work, in that it gives an unsurpassed and very necessary (this will become apparent if you buy it) introduction to the great man's work.
Five stars without hesitation! If you plan on reading Nietzsche this is a fantastic introductory text, which, I'm sure you will come to agree, is thoroughly indespensible.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Thucyvelli on 10 Jun. 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Walter Kaufmann's exposition of Nietzsche's thought is so precise, all-encompassing, and equitable that one almost cannot study Nietzsche without reading it.

The book is superbly structured. Kaufmann manages to follow the development of Nietzsche's philosophy perfectly, from the beginning of Nietzsche's activity to its very end. One by one Kaufmann demolishes all the myths, misinterpretations, and perversions conjured around Nietzsche's philosophy. Kaufmann truly does justice to the great German thinker. He manages to highlight Nietzsche's key philosophical conceptions, and shows how they all fit together and form one unitary stream of thought.

Kaufmann points out himself that Nietzsche is probably the easiest German philosopher to read, but the hardest to understand. And it is here that Kaufmann's great literary skill, and all-encompassing and highly lucid analysis come in, not only to do justice to Nietzsche's thought, but to present it in a captivating and beautiful piece of philosophical work in itself.

If one is interested in understanding Nietzsche's thought, and understanding it well this is the book to read and a masterpiece in itself.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Anthony Murphy on 4 July 2010
Format: Paperback
I agree - 5 stars without question. This book is dynamite - Kaufmann must know his German very well because he has actually READ Nietzsche - I am so grateful he wrote this book. I think he has done the great man justice....
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Logain on 13 Nov. 2011
Format: Paperback
5 stars without hesitation. The book is a tour de force of Nietzsche's philosophy touching on everything from the life of Nietzsche, the will to power, sublimation, self-overcoming and Eternal Recurrence.

The first edition was published in the 50s and the language is slightly old-fashioned so be prepared for that. Careful reading is required both because of this and because the subject is dense to begin with. This is not light reading. However you can rest assured the translation from the original German is spot on. Kaufmann is a native German speaker and his English is better than mine. The second drawback is that knowledge of other philosophers would be very useful when reading this book. Specifically Socrates, Plato, Kant and Schopenhauer. If you don't have much knowledge of these philosophers then don't worry you'll just have to read a little more carefully - as I did.

Now the actual content. When Nietzsche is properly understood his ideas really do offer a challenging and perhaps life changing experience for the reader. Even if you do not agree with his conclusions his thoughts are an interesting and alternative paradigm in which to view the world. Once you learn of the will to power as a model in which to explain human behaviour other peoples' actions (and your own) suddenly take on a whole new meaning.

The concepts of over-coming, sublimation and the natural conclusion of these - the Ubermensch or Overman offer a great opportunity for personal growth. Although I do not agree with everything Nietzsche has to say, and I probably do not fully understand some ideas I have nevertheless taken some of the best ideas to heart. This is a profound and thought-provoking book. As I read I underlined passages and sentences and I can see myself months and years from now dipping back into this book to once again be inspired by Nietzsche's genius.

Buy it, read it.
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