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Customer Review

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ideal for the non specialist interested in learning the basics of a fascinating and still very pertinant philosphy, 23 Dec. 2010
This review is from: Schopenhauer: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
This is a very neat little book and I think meets a genuine need. Arthur Schopenhauer's philosophy has influenced some of the leading creative artists and thinkers in the 160 years since the world woke up to Schopenhauer's philosophical greatness. A list of those significantly influenced by Schopenhauer's work would include Richard Wagner, Friedrich Nietzsche, Leo Tolstoy, Gustav Mahler, Thomas Hardy, Sigmund Freud, Joseph Conrad, T S Eliot, Thomas Mann, Samuel Beckett, Borges - the list is long and very distinguished.

Many admirers of these great figures will want to gain an understanding of Schopenhauer's thought so as to be able to appreciate the nature and extent of his influence upon Mann, Wagner, Conrad or whoever. A detailed study of Schopenhauer's work from the original works and the extended studies by academic philosophers is quite an undertaking and this little book circumvents the needs for such work.

Christopher Janaway is a deservedly renowned expert in the field of Schopenhauerian philosophy and he takes the reader through all the key areas that need attention.
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Showing 1-10 of 12 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 15 Jun 2011, 10:17:23 BST
[Deleted by Amazon on 12 Apr 2017, 09:16:31 BST]

In reply to an earlier post on 15 Jun 2011, 19:27:52 BST
Last edited by the author on 15 Jun 2011, 21:07:44 BST
Thank you for your comment.

It is certainly true that Hitler did claim that while he was fighting on the western front in the First World War he had old battered copies of the two volumes of Die Welt als WIlle und Vorstellung with him at all times. Hans Frank reported these claims which Hitler made much later when he was in power. However when one looks at Hitler's views of the world one can detect no Schopenhauerian philosophy in them. Hitler used the concept of will a great deal but will as the Nazis conceived it has nothing in common with Schopenhauer's very specific use of the idea.

It is difficult to see how anyone adopting a Schopenhaurian approach to life could hope to achieve much in the ambition driven world of politics least of all an egotistical totalitarian like Herr A Hitler

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Jun 2011, 11:04:57 BST
[Deleted by Amazon on 12 Apr 2017, 09:16:33 BST]

In reply to an earlier post on 21 Jan 2016, 09:40:25 GMT
You say that Hitler "was HUGELY influenced by Arthur Schopenhauer", the implication presumably being that Hitler derived some of his political programme from Schopenhauer. Now, as you know, the centre of Schopenhauer's ethics is compassion, based on the idea that the suffering of others hurts us too. Could you explain then the connection between this idea and the Hitler's mass murders and wars? The reason I ask is that I can't see a connection. Thanks.

In reply to an earlier post on 21 Jan 2016, 10:31:43 GMT
[Deleted by Amazon on 12 Apr 2017, 09:19:44 BST]

In reply to an earlier post on 21 Jan 2016, 10:51:10 GMT
I think you are trying to say Hitler committed no murders in the sense of physically committing the act but ordering or even encouraging others to perform the physical act is surely evil. I cannot believe you still follow David Irving's view that was torn to pieces years ago in court in a case that I was involved in

In reply to an earlier post on 21 Jan 2016, 13:46:31 GMT
[Deleted by Amazon on 12 Apr 2017, 09:19:45 BST]

In reply to an earlier post on 21 Jan 2016, 14:53:32 GMT
Dear Wulfgar, Schopenhauer died in 1860. What role did Schopenhauer play in the Third Reich that might make your comments relevant the book I reviewed?

In reply to an earlier post on 21 Jan 2016, 21:14:29 GMT
[Deleted by Amazon on 12 Apr 2017, 09:19:46 BST]

In reply to an earlier post on 4 Feb 2016, 11:43:13 GMT
Thanks for the reading suggestion. I'll have a look at the book as soon as I can. In the meantime I think you acquaint yourself with Richard Evans' "Telling Lies about Hitler".
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