Talk:Influence and reception of Friedrich Nietzsche

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After World War II???[edit]

"Even George Santayana, an American philosopher whose life and work betray some similarity to Nietzsche's, dismissed Nietzsche in his 1916 Egotism in German Philosophy as a "prophet of Romanticism"." —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:30, 9 February 2011 (UTC)

Letter to Nietzsche's Sister[edit]

For the letter to Nietzsche's sister, citing a website does not seem like the most appropriate reference. Is this letter published somewhere? If not, who owns the letter? Similarly, who translated the letter? (PhilipDSullivan 20:35, 20 September 2007 (UTC))

That letter is definately not written by Nietzsche. Kaufmann immediately identified it as a fake. The letter is published, but is out of print, and most universities do not consider it as authentic. Thenietzscheapostle (talk) 12:16, 5 January 2010 (UTC)

Made the decision to delete[edit]

I have given close to a month for a response on this problem to the letter citation and there has been none. I checked the website and I have found no indication as to where the letter is located, who has published it, or who has translated it. I am removing the text and quote in the article making reference to this article. Below is the section being removed incase there is an argument for its survival. PhilipDSullivan 23:05, 16 October 2007 (UTC)

The deleted[edit]

Nietzsche himself thoroughly disapproved of his sister's anti-Semitic views; in a letter to her he wrote:

You have committed one of the greatest stupidities—for yourself and for me! Your association with an anti-Semitic chief expresses a foreignness to my whole way of life which fills me again and again with ire or melancholy. … It is a matter of honor with me to be absolutely clean and unequivocal in relation to anti-Semitism, namely, opposed to it, as I am in my writings. I have recently been persecuted with letters and Anti-Semitic Correspondence Sheets. My disgust with this party (which would like the benefit of my name only too well) is as pronounced as possible.

— Friedrich Nietzsche, Letter to His Sister, Christmas 1887

Opening Paragraph[edit]

The opening paragraph seems a bit weak to me. This could be because this entire article seems to me to not live up to its title. But maybe if we can propose a structure, purpose, and definition of what we truly aim to achieve in this opening paragraph the rest of the article will by neccesity fall into a better place. PhilipDSullivan 04:07, 18 October 2007 (UTC)


The list of trivia building is nothing more than a list of trivia, and it seems to have items of self promotion items. If we allow one we will have to allow any reference ever made to nietzsche by any band or author and I have to ask how will this service our article? This type of information would be suitable in an article about trivial facts associated with nietzsche but I believe it degrades the value of this attempt at something good. I am going to delete the entire section of items that seem trivial. If there is an arguement to keep any of these PLEASE talk about it here first. I can understand how some seem appropriate but as the list continues into the absurd there seems to be no suitable place to draw the line and thus the line seems best drawn at the threshold. PhilipDSullivan 04:58, 26 October 2007 (UTC)


I could be mistaken, but for there to be a non neutral point of view there would actually have to be a talk page with more than one editor in which two editors have an ongoing disagreement, because there is no such disagreement I am removing the POV labeling. I agree fully that this article needs a lot of improvement of which multiple experts would be needed for the multiple time periods and groups that would be involved in an explanation of Nietzsche's influence. PhilipDSullivan 05:08, 26 October 2007 (UTC)

I've looked at it, and I agree. The section on Nietzsche and fascists contradicts itself, and seems to imply that the only viewpoint is that Nietzsche had nothing to do with Nazism. -- LightSpectra (talk) 01:39, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
You agree with what? That the article needs improvement? In any case, the section on Nietzsche and Fascism certainly needs improvement, but how can you state it "contradicts itself"? First of all, the section itself discusses in (some) detail the way in which Nietzsche's work was appropriated by the NSDAP. It makes it very clear that Nietzsche as a figure, and his work, was appropriated by the organization. It goes on to relate that scholars have noted that many of Nietzsche's statements do not fit with expressed NSDAP ideology. You state the article contradicts itself without providing any affirmative, concrete and specific indication of a contradiction. You also fail to meaningfully distinguish between Nietzsche's work (which was distorted and appropriated by the NSDAP) and Nietzsche himself - as though Nietzsche could have anything to do with a movement that did not exist during his life. The contradiction you claim (if I can make any sense of this claim) appears to be based on the idea that the section says he was involved with the Nazis while simultaneously indicating that he was not. That's all well and good except for the fact that this is not an accurate characterization of the section. How could a section that has two long paragraphs about the appropriation of Nietzsche's work by Nazi's be characterized as implying that Nietzsche's work had nothing to do with Nazism? And how could Nietzsche the man, who ceased to be functional and then died long before the Nazis appeared, and who distanced himself clearly from anti-Semitism and German nationalism, be conceived as 'having to do' with Nazis? In the absence of any conceivable justification, I am removing this tag. --Picatrix (talk) 11:47, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
First of all, please don't remove the tags on the article until it has been properly debated. Even if you don't think there is an issue, it hasn't been resolved yet. Secondly, the second paragraph asserts that there are no similarities between Nazism and Nietzsche's writings, even though his beliefs on the "superman" were clearly an influence on the Nazi ideology. -- LightSpectra (talk) 18:14, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
By that reasoning then perhaps we should properly debate whether the tag is necessary before it is applied, no? In any case, the sentence to which I suppose you refer is:
"Although there exist few — if any — similarities between Nietzsche's political views and Nazism,[dubious – discuss] phrases like "the will to power" became common in Nazi circles."
If you have an issue with this sentence that's fine, and the section as a whole is sub-optimal, so it all needs work. However, the section still cannot be said to be contradictory, nor can the sentence itself. If your issue was with this sentence then why tag the entire section as contradicting itself? As for your claim that the sentence in question asserts that there are no similarities between Nazism and Nietzsche's writings, I would suggest you read it again, as it asserts rather that Nietzsche's political views (which were clearly opposed to German Nationalism and anti-Semitism) had little, if anything, in common with Nazism. This is not the same as saying there were no similarities, as you claim, and in any case there is no self-contradiction in the section which I am able to perceive. On the other hand the section could and should be expanded, other points of view can be cited, and the meandering block quotation at the end of the section appears to be a long-winded way of saying nothing in particular, and hence should probably go away. But contradictory? --Picatrix (talk) 18:47, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
If one sentence in the second paragraph contradicts the entire first, then it warrants the tag. Now, what the sentence itself says is "there exist few, if any, similarities between Nietzsche's political views and Nazism", which is what I dispute. It heavily implies that there is only one viewpoint, which is that Nietzsche was severely misread by the National Socialists; whereas it is a valid and legitimate opinion that that they followed many of his opinions (i.e., the concept of the Übermensch), albeit ignored his rants against nationalism and antisemitism. Perhaps the sentence should be changed to something along the lines of, "Nietzsche's defenders claim that there exist few similarities between his political views and Nazism". -- LightSpectra (talk) 04:23, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
Perhaps you should provide a citation in support of this claim of yours which, to be frank, suggests a superficial acquaintance with Nietzsche's ideas. In any case, it seems the issue is one of POV rather than one of contradiction. If you want to place the sentence you suggest that's fine with me, just cite a reputable source indicating that Nietzsche shared political ideas with Nazis, and that the significant body of scholarship that refutes this should be characterized as claims made by "defenders" (which phrasing suggests partisan bias). Or perhaps you could phrase it like this: ""Nietzsche's attackers claim that there exist many similarities between his political views and Nazism".
If a 'Christian' sect 'borrows' and distorts the original teaching of Jesus as represented in the Gospels, would it be right to say that Jesus had much in common with the ideas of this hypothetical splinter sect? Or, to take a concrete example, do the teachings of Jesus have much in common with 'pessimist' and antinomian gnosticism of Alexandria in the first few centuries after his death? Whether they do or not, given that many gnostics claimed Jesus as their spiritual predecessor, would it be accurate to say that his inspired ideas, adopted and distorted by these gnostics, were evidence of the fact that Jesus and these gnostics shared political views? The gnostics of Alexandria certainly claimed this was true, but I suspect that in this case, unlike that of Nietzsche, many would treat their claims with skepticism. In any case, if I wanted to make an edit saying that Jesus' ideas had much in common with gnosticism then I would have to provide a citation supporting this claim.
However, the fact that this section (and really this article) is poorly written and meandering cannot be denied. I suspect the whole section needs to be re-written, so I'll get to it as soon as I can. --Picatrix (talk) 14:26, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
After a careful re-reading of the article and going through the process of editing I should retract my statement about the whole thing being poorly written and meandering; only the fascism section was particularly bad. Other editors have done excellent work here. I've gone through and expanded things and (hopefully) balanced the material somewhat. I'd like to see the section on Psychoanalysis expanded, as the relationship between Freud and Nietzsche seems somewhat complex. I'd also like to see a Nietzsche and feminism section added. Anyway, hopefully the extensive edits will put the business about lack of balance (or insufficient representation of other points of view) to rest. --Picatrix (talk) 15:25, 25 April 2009 (UTC)
I'm satisfied with the re-write. -- LightSpectra (talk) 18:20, 26 April 2009 (UTC)

Other POV[edit]

Some unassuming editor, when introducing Bertrand Russell's critique/anger of Nietzsche, wrote that "Russell might have been defamatory but his presentation nevertheless remains highly accurate..." Defamation, by definition, is "the act of saying false things..." (Merriam-Webster) -- so how can Russell’s statements be "highly accurate" yet saying "false things"? Some other parts were also subject to editorial bias that I didn't bother to remove. For example, I don't know how accuracy of this statement: "[Russell's critique] attains a better representation of the philosopher than the vast majority of contemporaneous writers." Eyeofpie 12:39, 21 May 2014 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Eyeofpie (talkcontribs)

Views on women[edit]

In spite of Nazi's general doctrine of Kinder, Kuche, Kirche (children, kitchen, church), they wasn't against women's participation in business if they wanted (Mein Kampf, II.3). Nietzsche wouldn't be neither, since he didn't consider business an important thing – so it would probably be in the terms of foolishness (that's rather there instead of "folly" in that quotation, according to the original), or in the terms of dance, recreation. – I think it's natural that if men participate in war, women are a bit less important, isn't it?

(And why Nietzsche praised an open war instead of a hidden one? Two major reasons: first, because "peace" supports morality which always struggles against most powerful elements (unless they deny themselves), and second, because it virtualizes life, i.e. separates the chances for survival from health and power.) —Preceding unsigned comment added by TheUgliest (talkcontribs) 05:37, 29 April 2008 (UTC)

Giant Chesterton quotation[edit]

Is it really that interesting that the outspoken Christian author Chesterton had contempt for Nietzsche? Do we really need a giant block quotation from him expressing his somewhat obtuse interpretation that Nietzsche's philosophy was clinically wrong? I don't think so. — goethean 23:57, 6 January 2010 (UTC)


I'm surprised there´s a whole page on his reception and no page whatsoever on criticism on him! He must have detractors and critics, why nothing of that is shown in a heading of its own?Undead Herle King (talk) 06:50, 15 April 2010 (UTC)


I would like to propose this page to be distinguished as exemplary of Wikipedia as the ultimate monument to Civilization's final and grotesque collapse. The general idiocy of this endless accumulation of senseless, soulless, and even mindless "information" reaches a obvious climax when it refers to Nietzsche, who perceived this fate before it became this obvious. But I guess this had to be, as well as all the rest. Sorry for this bit of thought in a place where it is proscribed. Adieu. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:36, 30 June 2012 (UTC)

As an estimable Nietzsche student with a university dissertation dedicated to the subject of Nietzsche's "unconventional political paradigm", I am bound to state: I more than heartily agree here in the absolutely disgraceful botching and mutilation of Nietzsche the "editorial magistracy" of Wikipedia has perpetrated in scholarly malfeasance, spreading the poverty of scholarship across nearly ALL Nietzsche-related articles to make matters worse...

There is NO balance, only mendacity of ideological fanaticism emanating from fashionable left-wing group-think.

EVERY article on Nietzsche ENDLESSLY BLABBERS to nauseating infinity about the devilishness of his sister, and how N. oh, so represented nothing but the precise antipodal opposite of "Aryan National Socialism" and proceeds to vend as intellectual goods the totally prejudiced and equally propagandist "interpretive consensocracy" of extreme Leftist "interpreters" like the post-structuralist/post-modernist ideologue Deleuze, etc., AS IF these all-too-human individuals possessed semi-feudal monopoly of exegesis in the world of Nietzsche studies...!

ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! Saving a miracle, Wikipedia is nothing but an experiment in educational literacy gone terribly, horrifically wrong!


YUCK! — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:56, 20 November 2013 (UTC)

The Meta-Logic of the Excessive Valuation of Post-Structuralists[edit]

I know my time here is short. I just honestly have a question for everybody here: why ON EARTH is such ostentatious, unbalanced pride of place given to the Left-Wing Post-Structuralist interpretive consensus on Nietzsche?

I cited Ernst Nolte in academic regularity, and was summarily censored. Ditto Georges Simmel on Nietzsche, etc.

Recently I cited Nietzsche's very own overjoyed approval of the designation of "aristocratic radicalism" applied to his meta-politics by a late admirer -- and was summarily censored.

Similar things, ad infinitum, ad nauseaum.


Section on Dora Marsden[edit]

The article stated: Perhaps one of the most authentic interpreters of Nietzsche in the anarchist sub-culture was Dora Marsden (1882-1960), initially a conventional Stirnerian egoist anarchist but over time breaking from the anarchist-socialist metaphysics, and creating her own philosophy of pure "Archism"—Marsden was so radical she abhorred the Proudhonian-mutualist "liberalism" advocated by Benjamin R. Tucker (1854-1939), an American whose Americanist ideas he conjoined awkwardly to Stirnerian egoism, and whose "anarchism" was hammered by Marsden as contemptible "clerico-liberterianism" [1] Regarding the remnants of Leftist utopian and democratic elements in Stirner's anthropology and anarchism, Marsden's Nietzschean "Archism" achieved the ultimate internecine critique of Stirner.

The section passes judgment in many ways without backing them up by quotations. Also, I do not understand why the reception by Dora Marsden is so important as to require a section of its own. -- Zz (talk) 16:14, 2 January 2014 (UTC)

Theodore Herzl[edit]

"Theodore Herzl incorporated Nietzschean ideas of honor, war, and statecraft into his Zionist philosophy and specified the future "Jewish state" was to resemble, in a sense, the Prussian caste state of feudalistic aristocrats dedicated to war as a path of life."

How absurdly incorrect. There is nothing of the sort in Altneuland, his vision of the future Jewish state. Can the person who wrote this provide a reference? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:19, 16 February 2014 (UTC)

"Absurdly incorrect." Please do more intensive research into the ideological origins and milieu of formation of "Zionism", fellow. I shall offer a beginner's hint to the "uninitiated"... Take a hint from Jacob Golomb if interested, "NIETZSCHE AND ZION"...

"...Zionism had come to assume the task of the long-awaited Messiah and 'liberate' the Jews from the Diaspora, a condition that was interpreted not only politically but spiritually. This was in consonance with the traditional Jewish understanding of Israel's sojourn in exile; the Zionists, however, tended to view Jewry's spiritual torment in radically secular terms, as generally pointing to the deformations of Jewry's inner life. Nietzsche's analysis of the spiritual maladies of bourgeois civilization appealed to many Zionists, for it offered them insights into what they regarded as being the spiritual corruption and desiccation attendant on two thousand years of exile, in which Israel was denied the normal conditions of healthy, life-affirming existence in tune with the creative forces of the people. Buber was hence one of a veritable battalion of Nietzsche's disciples among the ranks of the Zionists. His distinction was that among German-speaking Zionists, he quickly took center-stage, and provided a vocabulary about which others would organize their commitment to a Nietzschean renewal of Israel's spiritual and creative life. In 1901 he published, in the central organ of the World Zionist Organization, 'Die Welt', to which Herzl had just appointed him to serve as editor-in-chief, a poem in which he encapsulated his vision of a reawakening of Israel's long-slumbering life-force:

Lord, Lord, shake my people, Strike it, bless it, furiously, gently, Make it burn, make it free, Heal your child

God, give the lost glow Back to my weary people, In wild, intoxicated flames Bestow on them your happiness.

See, only a fever can save it And raging exuberance, Awaken it, and, Father, lead the throng To Jordan's field.

The Nietzschean inflections of this pathetic cry are unmistakable, as they are in an essay he published a month earlier, 'Judische Renaissance.' This essay was to have an seminal impact on Zionist and twentieth-century Jewish discourse in general. ..." pg. 200 something etc. etc.

Sorry if this offends people. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2602:304:B34B:A940:F051:AB0F:3A76:DE48 (talk) 18:59, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

December IP edits[edit]

This morning an IP was blocked after a discussion at ANI,[1] partially for adding original research in fairly obscure language and trolling. One very experienced editor cmmented that "The contributions are gibberish and many of them, to the extent understandable, are alarming." He made 2 edits here - they are [2] He's also added pov phrases, et "not without reason", etc. This really needs cleaning up by someone familiar with the article. Thanks. Dougweller (talk) 14:20, 22 February 2014 (UTC)

  1. ^ Marsden, Dora. The Egoist 1 (18).  Missing or empty |title= (help)