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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Wrong approach to a short introduction, 23 Nov 2012
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This review is from: Nietzsche: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
Having read many of the short introduction series, I was disappointed with this one. The Guardian plaudit on the back praising it as 'highly readable' is very misleading. It isn't. Not unless you're a well read scholar of classics with an incredibly strong grasp of English.

I think Tanner was the wrong person to author this introduction. Parts of it read more like a thesis than an accessible introduction. Much of the terminology was completely unnecessary and smacked more of showing off rather than providing an accessible short introduction, as was surely the publisher's objective.

Granted Nietzsche isn't readily accessible, and anyone would have their work cut out collating his works into something lucid and coherent. However, the whiff of intellectual snobbery was pungent throughout this book. Which is just rude given its target audience. Singer's treatment of Hegel in this series hit exactly the right tone so it is possible for commentators to decipher philosophers with obscure concepts. Yet in this instance, it's like our guide just couldn't be bothered.

Tanner obviously knows what he's talking about. No doubt. However, unless you've an MA in Philosophy (and even then you'll struggle) then maybe give this one a miss. There's better commentators who are more respectful to their audiences and who don't incessantly feel the urge to demonstrate how many big words they know.
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