Aesthetic Transformations: Taking Nietzsche at His Word by Thomas Jovanovski

By Thomas Jovanovski

During this provocative paintings, Thomas Jovanovski provides a contrasting interpretation to the postmodernist and feminist analyzing of Nietzsche. As Jovanovski keeps, Nietzsche’s written idea is in particular a sustained exercise aimed toward negating and superseding the (primarily) Socratic rules of Western ontology with a brand new desk of aesthetic ethics - ethics that originate from the Dionysian perception of Aeschylean tragedy. simply because the Platonic Socrates perceived a urgent want for, and succeeded in constructing, a brand new world-historical ethic and aesthetic course grounded in cause, technology, and optimism, so does Nietzsche regard the rebirth of an outdated tragic mythos because the motor vehicle towards a cultural, political, and non secular metamorphosis of the West. notwithstanding, Jovanovski contends that Nietzsche doesn't recommend one of these radical social turning as an lead to itself, yet as merely the main consequential prerequisite to knowing the culminating item of his «historical philosophizing» - the exceptional visual appeal of the Übermensch.

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Extra info for Aesthetic Transformations: Taking Nietzsche at His Word (American University Studies)

Sample text

Although Socratism first appears as something resembling a scion, it is no mere copy of, but an outgrowth that is entirely capable of transforming, its parent plant’s structural identity. It is this artistic “malignancy” which Nietzsche identifies as the single most important development that caused the Apollinian artistic direction to eventually “succumb” and withdraw “into the cocoon of logical schematism” (ibid. 14). ” The various connotations and implications of this descriptive name aside, in The Birth of Tragedy (and elsewhere) Nietzsche presents us with ample evidence which reveals the same expression as ranging anywhere from a verbal irony to a misnomer and even a contradiction in terms.

Our religion, morality, and philosophy,” he remarks in a typical passage, “are decadence forms of man. The countermovement: art” (ibid. 794). qxd 5/9/07 6:53 AM Page 5 the chiaroscuro of nietzsche’s aesthetics 5 Having delineated beauty as a psycho-physiological self-overcoming, let us now see how Nietzsche’s aesthetics might be adopted as a schema for forging a radically different existential course through the sea of possibilities immediately following the death of God. But, surely, some might protest, this betrays a misunderstanding; for other than claiming that insofar as existence and the world are continuously justified as aesthetic phenomena, which is to say that the vacuum created by God’s demise would not necessarily culminate in nihilism, Nietzsche presents us with no distinct aesthetic doctrine.

Rationality’ against instinct. ‘Rationality’ at any price as a dangerous force that undermines life. (EH III “BT” 1) Aside from undermining the basis of Socrates’ didactics, the idea of human existence we find in The Birth of Tragedy challenges the dominant philosophies of Nietzsche’s period. “Let us not be deceived either in the Kantian or in the Hegelian manner,” he warns. “We no longer believe in morality, as they did, and consequently we have no need to found a philosophy with the aim of justifying morality” (WP 415).

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