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A Nietzsche Compendium (Barnes & Noble Library of Essential Reading)
Beyond Good and Evil, On the Genealogy of Morals, Twilight of the Idols, The Antichrist, and Ecce Homo
This convenient new compendium contains the five most philosophically significant of Nietzsche’s post-Thus Spoke Zarathustra writings. Nietzsche wrote of these works that he intended them as “fish hooks” for catching readers who shared his sense that a cataclysmic shift in human psychology had suddenly occurred with the advent of nihilism – the uncanny and pervasive feeling that life is devoid of all meaning, purpose, and value. Taken together these books offer the reader a definitive account of Nietzsche’s mature philosophy as he intended it to be presented and a sweeping attack upon everything the modern Western world holds to be good about itself.
Friedrich Nietzsche was born in 1844, in Saxony, Germany. He was a brilliant student and a prodigy in the burgeoning field of philology (the analysis of the grammar, syntax, and vocabulary of ancient languages), receiving the position of full professor at the philology department of the University of Basel, Switzerland, at the unprecedented age of 24. His first book, The Birth of Tragedy Out of the Spirit of Music, published in 1872, propounded a groundbreaking reinterpretation of pre-Socratic, ancient Greek culture which ultimately supplanted the romanticized ideal of “ancient Greece” that had held sway in European intellectual circles since the Renaissance. His subsequent publications would do little in Germany during his productive lifetime but cement his reputation as a gifted but unduly contentious writer and thinker. Nietzsche suffered a complete mental breakdown in late 1888. However, in the period immediately preceding, he was at his most prolific, producing numerous major works between 1886 and 1889, four of which were penned in 1888 alone. By the time he died in 1900, his works were already becoming internationally recognized as masterpieces of philosophy and literature.