Item description for Thus Spake Zarathustra by Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche & Thomas Common...
Thus Spake Zarathustra is certainly Nietzsche's most controversial and probably his most important work. The concepts that "God is Dead" and "Eternal Recurrence" with their attendant ramifications are major features of this work. Highly original and inventive, Thus Spake Zarathustra defies simple categorization. Part literature, part philosophy, it parodies both, in its stylistic resemblance to the New Testament and Pre-Socratic Greek writings.
Through a fictionalized version the character Zarathustra, the legendary founder of Zoroasterianism, Nietzsche propounds a new and different version of moral philosophy. During the course of the story presented in this loosely structured narrative, Nietzsche develops and presents a contrary view of mankind: as lying somewhere between the apes and the ultimate Superman, or Ubermensch. Ranging from unsupported assumptions to rigorous argument - from exposition to dialog to poetry - Thus Spake Zarathustra is a surprising, engaging and thought provoking look at the condition of mankind.
Nietzsche himself considered this to be his most important work. His tragic end, in a state of complete mental breakdown, precluded any possibility that it would be superseded and raised a question of the association between madness and genius.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 0.5" Width: 5.25" Height: 8.75" Weight: 0.85 lbs.
Release Date Mar 12, 2007
Publisher El Paso Norte Press
ISBN 1934255068 ISBN13 9781934255063
Availability 0 units.
More About Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche & Thomas Common
FRIEDRICH NIETZSCHE was born on October 15, 1844, to the family of a Protestant minister in the town of Rocken, which is located in the Saxony-Anhalt region of what is now eastern Germany. After studing philosophy in Bonn and Leipzig, Nietzsche became a professor at the University of Basel, Switzerland, in 1869. Later he opted to become a Swiss citizen. While working in Switzerland, he published his first book, a literary work titled The Birth of Tragedy from the Spirit of Music. This volume was produced during Nietzsche's friendship with the composer Richard Wagner, though only a few years would pass before the two would part ways as a result of personal and intellectual differences. In failing health and unable to devote himself full time to both teaching and independent writing, Nietzsche chose to resign his university position. During the next decade he wrote such works as Thus Spake Zarathustra (most of which appeared in 1883), Beyond Good and Evil (1886), Genealogy of Morals (1887), Twilight of the Gods (1888), Antichrist (1888), and Ecce Homo (1888). His collapse while in Turin, Italy, in early 1899, would prove the beginning of a long and arduous struggle with ill health and insanity. Nietzsche died in the care of his family in Weimar on August 25, 1900, just a few weeks prior to his fifty-sixth birthday. Nietzsche advocated the view that all humankind should reject otherworldliness and instead rely on its own creative potential to discover values that best serve the social good. His infamous "superman" or "overman" is one who has recognized how to channel individual passions in the direction of creative outlets. In rejecting the morality of the masses, Nietzsche celebrates the pursuit of classical virtues.
Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche was born in 1844 and died in 1900.
Reviews - What do customers think about Thus Spake Zarathustra?
brilliant and creative mind Jul 30, 2008
I am not educated in philosophy, so I read this book slowly with the help of Sparknotes and ended up really enjoying the book, not only for its philosophy (not all of which I found agreeable, however, tremendously interesting) but also for its creativity, humor and its literary energy and complexity. It is always a treat to read writings of such a brilliant thinker of our time.
Algora pub./T. Wayne trans. edition is best Jun 23, 2008
This is an amazing, but also sometimes amazingly difficult to access, work. It is unfortunate that Kauffman's is the most widely used translation, because his translation is clunky and ponderous. T. Wayne's translation, in contrast, is very lyrical and frequently simply makes more sense. In some places it does appear that Mr. Wayne tries too hard to distinguish his translation from that of Kauffman, meaning his difference in word choice does not improve the work but rather makes it worse. However, to be fair, that is rare and the vast majority of the differences mark a substantial improvement. The most disappointing thing about this edition is that the publishers/editors (Algora) did a pretty sloppy job, so there are a number stupid typographical errors that will hopefully be corrected if Algora ever re-publishes it.
An incredibly misunderstood genius!! Jun 5, 2008
Nietzsche was controversial (and reveled in it), but he was also grossly misunderstood. To pigeonhole his philosophy as simply about glorifying barbaric agresssion does a grave disservice to his quest for uplifting the human soul. Nietzsche was a man who absolutely ABHORRED mediocrity, and dedicated his work into helping man reclaim the "star" that he always potentially possesses, provided he is willing to free himself from the shackles of dogma and conventionality. "Thus Spoke Zarathustra" is Nietzsche's manifesto on how to get there.
The concept of the "last-man" is brilliant, and unbelievably prescient!! This smug. self-satisfied, herd-like man exists today in overwhelming abundance!! The "last-man," to quote Nietzsche "has no shepherd and one herd! Everybody wants the same, everybody is the same: whoever feels different goes voluntarily into a madhouse." When you look around and see the mindless banal dreck on televison, in newspapers, and throughout society in general, you see the deleterious effects of the contented "last-man" who can no longer have contempt for himself, therefore, he cannot and will not strive to advance himself!!
One may not agree with everything in "Thus Spoke Zarathustra," but it is unquestionably a brilliant work that will open up new vistas of the mind and have you examining man's spiritual condition in an utterly profound way. And Nietzsche's writing style is, at its best, almost lyrical!!
One of the most challenging works I have ever read Apr 15, 2008
Thus Spoke Zarathustra (originally Also Sprach Zarathustra) is considered by some (myself included) to have been the crowning work of the nineteenth century German philosopher Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1844-1900). Unlike most modern philosophical works, Zarathustra's format harkens back to the Bible and to the ancient Greek works such as Plato's dialogues. In it, Zarathustra wanders the landscape, talking to people, drawing out the fallacies of what they believe and propounding Nietzsche's philosophy.
Overall, I found this to be one of the most challenging works I have ever read. Nietzsche's use of paradox and ambiguity tends to obscure his teachings, while at the same time challenging the reader to read closely and understand what he is saying in spite of the ambiguity. But, it is well worth the effort.
In his seminal work, The End of History and the Last Man, Francis Fukuyama argues that the last philosophy standing that can possibly challenge the reigning philosophy of the West is that of Friedrich Nietzsche. And so, I do believe that it is worth understanding Nietzsche. Is this the best book to read to understand the great philosopher? I can't say. But, it is the book I started with. It is a challenging read, but definitely well worth the effort. I have had a copy of this book since college, and to this day I still periodically take it off the shelf and read it again.
Become what thou art!! Apr 15, 2008
"But by my love and hope I beseech you: do not throw away the hero in your soul! Hold holy your highest hope!" ~ Friedrich Nietzsche from "Thus Spoke Zarathustra"
You ready for some Nietzsche? Let's start with how you say the guy's name shall we? You can pronounce "Nietzsche" either "knee-chee" or "knee-cha." (I prefer the latter...sounds cooler, don't you think? ;)
With that behind us, you're ready for a warning: Be warned: The man, as they say, delivers his philosophy with a hammer. As Walter Kaufmann brilliantly articulates in the foreword, Nietzsche "is a dedicated enemy of all convention, intent on exposing the stupidity and arbitrariness of custom."
In "Thus Spoke Zarathustra," we meet the enlightened hero, Zarathustra, who has come down from the mountaintop to deliver a series of scathing rants on everything from his famous proclamation that "God is dead!" to admonitions to forget loving thy neighbor and instead learn to love the farthest.
It's written in a mock-Biblical style and features Nietzsche's undying commitment to our potential. If you're new to Nietzsche and thinking about reading the book, you'll definitely want a quiet space to read but don't be intimidated. Once you get into it, it flows.