The Case Of Nietzsche Against Trump

Revealing The Shallow Image Of The Superman

By Professor Jacob Golomb (Hebrew University of Jerusalem)

January 15, 2017         Picture: Lucas Jackson/Reuters.

This article is part of The Critique’s January/February 2017 Issue “Stick It To The Man: A Year Of Anglo-American Populist Revolt Against A Changing Culture And An Obtuse Political Establishment.”

Nietzsche and Trump? Is it not almost a contradiction in terms? What can the brilliant German philosopher have in common with this populist demagogue? The central ideal of Nietzsche’s anthropological philosophy is the individual who freely shapes his own character and destiny. Hence, he was frequently described as the ‘radical aristocrat’ of the spirit who abhorred mass culture and strove to cultivate a special kind of human being, the Übermensch, endowed with exceptional spiritual and mental qualities. What does such a thinker have in common with Trump’s manipulation of the masses for chauvinistic and racists goals that swallow up the personalities and life of the individual? Was not Nietzsche the sage who exclaimed: “Public opinions — private indolence”[i]?

Here I will argue that there is nothing in common between Nietzsche and Trump since they stand on two opposite poles of the human ladder that are starkly antithetical to each other. One who hates, molest and abuses his wealth or political power cannot be regarded by Nietzsche as belonging to the small elite of people endowed with positive power patterns. Add to this Trump’s deep feelings of resentment and vengefulness and you definitely approach an Untermensch that is a very far cry from the ideal of Übermensch.

Molesting, abusing, swearing, and intimidating, do not belong to the behavioral patterns of the fictitious Zarathustra who personifies in Nietzsche the sublime and authentic personality of a Mensch (also in its recurrent Yiddish connotations). Nonetheless, out of these contradictory features of Nietzsche’s ideal vis-à-vis Trump’s abomination of it, emerges something common that we, in order to give more or less a fair account of this opposition must address ourselves. I mean that Trump, despite his numerous flaws, also represents the revolt against the establishment and against the ruling majority and ethos. However we should not be mistaken: this revolt does not signify the heroic protest of the very best and able who prefer the sublime quality of intellectual achievements rather than the sheer quantity of the ignorant masses who are moved by, what Nietzsche used to call, the “instinct of the Herd”. From this perspective, even Ayn Rand’s primitive heroes, who somewhat resemble Nietzschean Übermensch, are closer to Nietzsche’s intuition than the caricature cartoon of Trump’s ‘Superman’[ii]. Sadly, Trump’s victory indicates that the mass culture and its cultural lowest common denominators that mobilize primitive instincts for cynical manipulations have got the upper hand in the eyes and votes of many Americans

To properly contextualize ‘Nietzsche versus Trump’ one not only has to sharply distinguish the ideal of the Übermensch from the shallow image of the Superman, but also discuss it vis-à-vis the cartoon culture that Trump (and not only his bizarre friseur à la Donald Duck) manifests. Therefore, what I am here putting in irreconcilable opposition to the other is the muscular blue ‘hero’ who wears pajamas and flies over Manhattan, against the self-tormented and highly original, authentic and creative Übermensch.

My reading of Nietzsche’s main writings will show that there actually exists a quite intimate relation — that of a diametric opposition — between Nietzsche’s authentic Übermensch, endowed with positive spiritual and generous power (Macht), and the inauthentic Superman who manifests the negative power, but nevertheless is exhibiting a considerable amount of physical force (Kraft) that eventually leads to acts of aggression and to violent abuse and exploitation of the weakest, as well as to resentful hatred of the Other[iii].


Authenticity versus Inauthenticity

Nietzsche did not use the term ‘authenticity’ explicitly, but it is possible to locate its origin in his recurrent distinctions between Wahrheit (truth) and Wahrhaftigkeit (truthfulness). This notion of Wahraftigkeit is virtually a synonym of the Heideggerian term eigentlich and of what in the later Existentialist literature is called authentic[iv]. The shift from philosophy to philosophers and that from the traditional meaning of truth to personal authenticity show up repeatedly in Nietzsche’s treatment of the history of philosophy. In his lectures on the Pre-Socratics he declares:

“The only thing of interest in a refuted system is the personal element. It alone is what is forever irrefutable.[v]

One of the basic intuitions of Nietzsche’s thought is the concept of complete immanence, formulated in sections 108‑125 of The Gay Science[vi]. Transcendental entities or supra‑natural powers do not exist; there is no ‘pure reason’, no other world, no domain different from or superior to our own. After the “Death of God” (i.e. one’s belief in God-Almighty) one has to adopt for oneself the God‑like role of being the originator of truth and of one’s own self.

We can attain ‘truthfulness’ only if we accept life in all its harshness and its complete immanency. If an individual is prevented from genuinely creating and expressing his self, a deepening alienation develops between him, his ‘civilized’ acts and his civilization. This is, then, the positive task of Nietzsche’s philosophy: to assist us in overcoming culture’s repression and entice us into uncovering and reactivating our own creative powers.

It appears that two seemingly contradictory models of authenticity are to be found in Nietzsche’s thought. The first model (whose historical roots are to be found in Rousseau) derives its inspiration from the biological metaphor of a plant actualizing the potential of the seed. It assumes the individualistic thesis, namely, that “every man is a unique miracle”, a unique aggregate of drives and wishes. One becomes authentic, according to this model, if one manages to fully manifest this complex in one’s lifetime. The second model employs the metaphor of art and artistic creation. The search for authenticity is seen as the wish to reflect one’s own indeterminacy by spontaneous choice of one out of the many possible ways of life. The individual is a kind of artist who freely shapes his self as a work of art.

Now, it is a mistake to think that Nietzsche embraced these two models equally. The second conception, that of artistic creation, is surely primary. Nietzsche rejects crude naturalism and determinism and does not believe that the innateness of one’s individualistic nature completely determines one’s self. Nietzsche is less concerned with biological nature and more with cultural conditioning and formative influences which blindly shape one’s character. To become “what we are”[vii] is not to live according to our so‑called ‘innate nature’, but to create ourselves freely. To that end we have to know ourselves to distinguish what we can change in ourselves and in the external circumstances that have shaped us; we must realize what we have to accept as inevitable, and must do so in the heroic manner of amor fati (love of one’s fate).

The idea of self-overcoming (Selbst Überwindung), is the key to the meaning of the will to power, a pivotal notion in Nietzsche. This is illustrated in Thus Spoke Zarathustra, where Nietzsche discusses the will to power in terms of the unceasing will to overcome oneself. The will to be rid of the superfluous elements of one’s character and culture indicates spiritual maturity. If one were to ask Nietzsche the purpose of this self‑overcoming, his answer would be, to attain maturity, authenticity and power. In this respect the will to power is of a piece with the quest for authenticity ‑‑ the will to become the free author of one’s own self. The optimal will to power is expressed by the ideally authentic Übermensch. If this will is diminished in quality, the tendency to escape from the task of creating one’s self and to identify with the “herd” will intensify. One endowed with a will to power of a higher quality and greater vitality will manifest the “master morality” and authentic life patterns, in contrast to the “slave morality” typical of those possessing lesser power (or Macht). The latter, however, may be endowed with greater physical force (Kraft). Nietzsche’s distinction between Kraft and Macht, which cannot be elaborated here[viii] represents his emphasis on the transition from sheer physical force and brutal violence (Gewalt) to spiritual‑creative power which is necessary if one is to attain personal authenticity.

“The will to power is of a piece with the quest for authenticity ‑‑ the will to become the free author of one’s own self.”

Nietzsche’s use of an artistic model of authenticity begins in The Birth of Tragedy (1872), where he delineates an “Apollonian principle” which exercises its drives in direct opposition to the “Dionysian barbarian” instincts. It does this through the creation of sophisticated images, and the imposition of order and a causal network onto the world.

The subjugation by Apollo of the unrestrained drives of the Dionysian barbarian (which is something that Trump finds quite difficult to master) is the source of art in general. This synthesis provides “the metaphysical comfort” which allows man to affirm existence despite its horrors. By this process, through which man is purified of his cruder components, he himself is transformed into an object of art, into an artistic sublimation: “He is no longer an artist”, Nietzsche tells us, “he has become a work of art.”[ix] This, in fact, is the image of the authentic individual who individualizes and creates himself. In this act of creation, creator and creation merge; any possible alienation between man and his created objects is overcome, since these objects become an integral part of his own self. For Nietzsche, the work of art is a product of the transforming of man’s drives. It is this sublimation by art, this artistic mode of being in the world, that enables one to remain himself and continue to live. Art protects man from the fear of existence and the struggle with absurd reality, without repressing his instinctual Dionysian elements. On the contrary, art allows them to be manifested by transforming the world into an ‘aesthetic phenomenon’, rendering it enjoyable in spite of its inherent pain.

One Apollonian principle, expressed in the command ‘know thyself’, is self‑consciousness. This means knowing one’s own instinctual desires, being aware of one’s hidden wishes and of one’s genuine, Dionysian character. At the same time it recommends coming to terms and living with them in a well‑functioning and authentic manner. The really powerful person, though cognizant of sickness, affirms life and health. Apollonian culture recognizes only the rational principle in nature and in its own creations. It therefore perpetuates an illusion regarding its true origins. This illusion prevented the Greeks from attaining authentic existence. For this reason, Nietzsche ultimately rejects the purely aesthetic solution and corrects it by proposing a concept of existence stripped of veils and self‑deceptions. This attitude is characteristic of the Übermensch; it leads to the acquisition of profound self‑knowledge by destroying our various rationalizations through a process of “unmasking”.

The process of attaining authenticity by unmasking begins to emerge in Nietzsche’s Schopenhauer as Educator, where he claims that human nature is “a thing dark and veiled.”[x] Although potentially creative and powerful, man is afraid of expressing himself freely, fully and uniquely, and hides behind various dogmas. He typically prefers empty generalizations to his own remarkable particularity. This motivates Nietzsche’s unmasking method, which attempts to free human individuality from such masks. Unmasking functions as a vehicle of authentic existence by exposing the individual’s dependence on external conditioning and internal deception.

A critical challenge to Nietzsche’s pursuit of the authentic personality is that of gaining access to the innermost self ‑‑- the “veiled” self carefully guarded by a complex of psychological defenses. Doubting the reliability of introspection[xi], Nietzsche prefers a more indirect course, the investigation of exemplary figures and models which assisted in developing self‑identity through assimilation. Thus he claims that: we are at liberty to shape our identity and ideals by freely choosing our educators; indeed our “educators” can only be our “liberators” (S.E., 129), Nietzsche pronounces. This freedom makes us responsible for our characters just as artists are responsible for their creations. The path to this creation of an authentic self follows the leads of one’s educators. By subjecting our intuitive admiration for exemplary figures to self‑analysis, we come to realize what we genuinely value and who we really are.

Nietzsche is well aware of the strong pressure exerted by social convention and educational systems. Hence the road to authenticity and spontaneous creativity requires two stages described by Nietzsche’s Zarathustra: “the spirit becomes a camel; and the camel, a lion; and the lion, finally, a child.[xii]” The individual (“the lion”) must liberate himself from “the camel”, i.e., from all the external layers imposed on him by institutional conditioning. Only then, after attaining a childlike state of “innocence”, can he proceed to the second stage, in which he consciously adopts and assimilates moral norms. These norms may well reflect the traditional values discarded in the first stage; it is not their content that matters, but the unconstrained manner in which they are adopted.

Nietzsche’s philosophy and the literary means he employs to present it are meant to lure his readers into joining the search for authenticity. This is the only alternative left after the “death of God”; the ability to embrace this alternative is indicative of the “free spirit par excellence.” Like Kierkegaard, Nietzsche presents the “coming generations with the terrifying Either/Or: “Either abolish your reverences or ‑‑yourselves!”[xiii] Nietzsche’s ultimate objective, then, is to make possible a creative and authentic life in a world without dogmatic beliefs. The death of dogma will not lead to the disintegration of one’s self, but rather will liberate one’s creative resources, repressed until now by morality. It will open new horizons to new beliefs, but these will function solely as life‑enhancing and self‑crystallizing “perspectives”. Once they have lost their usefulness, such beliefs will be discarded and replaced by other perspectives. But all those perspectives have to function as powerful enticements for readers to adopt for themselves the cognitive and behavioral patterns of existing authentically as “Free Spirits par excellence” (G. S., 347). Apparently, Trump has never read, let alone embraced these liberating existential recommendations.

Nietzsche was well aware that his enticement is not for everyone and delineated different reactions to it as indicating different types of power:

“What serves the higher type of men as nourishment… must almost be poison for a very different and inferior type…. There are books that have opposite values for soul and health, depending on whether the lower soul, the lower vitality, or the higher and more vigorous ones turn to them: in the former case, these books are dangerous and lead to crumbling and disintegration; in the latter, herald’s cries that call the bravest to their courage.”[xiv]

Three kind of responses to Nietzsche’s challenge are implied in this passage: the “inferior type” of disintegrated and inauthentic self is confused, and escapes from the burdensome “self‑overcoming” it entails; the “higher type” of adequate, genuine self accepts it and becomes more powerful and independent; the authentic Übermensch does not respond to this enticement since he does not require it. Such avoidance of Nietzsche’s challenge does not stem here from weakness of the will but from a surplus of power.

This view of Nietzsche’s writing as a means for the enticement of the reader may explain its peculiar nature. Nietzsche intended his books for the few who would really understand and benefit from them. They aim to shock and attract us, softening and reducing our resistance. It is not by accident that in several places Nietzsche insists on the close connection between his goal as a philosophical Enticer (Versucher) and his peculiar literary style. “Whatever is profound loves masks” declares Nietzsche, and whatever forms one’s self, loves the enticing and ironic mask behind which lies “so much graciousness in cunning”. Nietzsche’s enticing literature then becomes “the path to the fundamental [existential] problems”. However, being only a path, it is naturally abandoned once it comes to an end. Nietzschean philosophy becomes, then, a sort of temporary scaffolding, or provisional “hypothesis”. It is a highly tolerant (as opposite to dogmatic) metaphoric structure in the literal meaning of the term meta-phora (change of form), to be abandoned once it has served its purpose.

Nietzsche’s teaching on power is not an induction or an experimental hypothesis. Apart from the method of unmasking, they clearly contain an explicative and typological dimension, in contrast to the constructive and explanatory aspect of the empirical sciences. This dimension is expressed in Nietzsche’s descriptions of the different patterns of power and in his distinction between its two central manifestations: the positive, which I take to be the authentic, and the negative, or inauthentic.


Negative versus Positive Power

Negative power is symptomatic of a weak self, lacking in power but incessantly attempting to obtain it:

“There are recipes for the feeling of power, firstly for those who can control themselves and who are thereby accustomed to a feeling of power; then for those in whom precisely this is lacking.”[xv]

Clearly, no positive power is exhibited in the satisfaction Trump derived from abusing and dominating one’s fellow beings. The negative power of one with a feeble sense of selfhood expresses itself not spontaneously but derivatively. It is fundamentally deficient, and hopelessly strives to encourage and fortify itself by means of abuse, cruelty and the “drive to distinction” (Daybreak., sec. 30). By contrast, one who possesses genuinely positive power, the really authentic self, needs neither the approbation of his surroundings, nor the medals and titles that allegedly attest to this power; nor does such a self require the various pleasures stemming from abusive domination in order to intensify the “feeling of power” ‑‑ for it is already intrinsically a part of him. This is the man who “becomes what he is” without deviously manipulating his surroundings or deriving his sense of potency and selfhood from transcendental ideologies or political banners, such as are currently flying over Trump’s cuckoo nest.

“One who possesses genuinely positive power, the really authentic self, needs neither the approbation of his surroundings, nor the medals and titles that allegedly attest to this power.”

Nietzsche’s elaborate criticism of the current ethic can be constructive only if guided by a regulative idea of an alternative moral pattern. He does not posit power against morality, but proposes an active morality of positive power that expresses courageous creativity. He contrasts the characteristic features of these two moralities: “All actions may be traced back to evaluations, all evaluations are either original or adopted ‑‑the latter being by far the most common” (Daybreak, 104).

Nietzsche maintains that the main reason for the latter is moral cowardice (D. sec. 101), which shuns the authentic expression of intrinsic power. The mechanisms for adopting traditional morality include blind internalization of external maxims, making them into habit, the “second nature” of a “camel”. This given, habitual ethic, conditioned in childhood (D. sec. 104), stands in contrast to the creative and authentic evaluations made by a mature selfhood.

Nietzsche, however, in explicating various moral phenomena, was not searching for new, esoteric values; he sought to re‑activate authentic modes of living. This can easily be seen by looking at some of the descriptions of positive power in his writings. We do not find any original or new values there but rather values that have already appeared in traditional philosophical ethics: self‑sufficiency, heroism, creative sublimation of instinct, intellectual tolerance, generosity, nobility, courage, vitality, self‑control, faith in oneself, the ability to accept contradiction, the lack of bad conscience, and the like. Most of these values can be found in the ethics of Plato, Spinoza, and Kant, but none of them in the political and demagogic pamphlets of Trumps supporters. In stark opposition to these naïve and fanatic fans, Nietzsche did not believe that we are capable of providing any rational foundation for our chosen and most cherished moral values. This is especially true of his ideal of authenticity which reigns supreme “beyond the good and the evil” ‑‑ beyond true and false, beyond the ethos of sincerity and objectivity. This, of course, raises the question: why should we prefer authenticity to negative power, if neither can be rationally justified? Why should we prefer the authentic Übermensch to the ordinary man or to the cartoonish Superman? To put it directly: why be a moral agent at all?

“Most of these values of traditional philosophy can be found in the ethics of Plato, Spinoza, and Kant, but none of them in the political and demagogic pamphlets of Trumps supporters.”

Nietzsche was aware of this meta‑ethical question, which he called “the problem of morality itself” (B.G..E, sec. 186). Like Kierkegaard’s Abraham[xvi], Nietzsche’s Zarathustra could not provide a rational answer to this question. He could only repeat the “terrifying Either/Or: ‘Either abolish your reverences or ‑‑ yourselves!”; these “reverences” are our convenient clinging to the prevailing ethic which has lost any existential appeal. The dissolution of our selves, however, “would be nihilism” (G.S., sec. 346), and Nietzsche encourages us to will, to create or actualize our authentic selfhoods simply because it would be spiritual suicide to do otherwise.

The wish to meet the challenge of authenticity must already be implicit, and it is the task of Nietzschean enticement to intensify it. There is thus no contradiction between the fact that Nietzsche gives no esoteric prescriptions, and his calling on us to live creatively and originally. Originality, Nietzsche believes, springs from the inherent sources of the self and lies in the manner in which it operates, not in its external manifestations. On Nietzsche’s view, his own originality is not exercised by founding a new and unique set of moral values but rather by elucidating already existing values and by giving them new names. “What is originality?” ‑‑ Nietzsche asks, and answers: “To see something that has no name as yet and hence cannot be mentioned although it stares us all in the face” (G.S., sec. 261). Such is the notion of authenticity or Wahrhaftigkeit which he wanted us to embrace and to enact in our life-patterns.

By enticing us to create our own selves, Nietzsche strives to assist us to overcome the impediments that have hitherto inhibited us. Nietzsche assumes that the mental powers to create our selves are deeply rooted in us, but because of various psychological handicaps, such as cowardice, we have repressed them. These handicaps have been projected as an ideological network and Nietzsche uses his unmasking “hammer” to shatter such repressive “idols”, to overcome them while freezing our faith in them.

And thus Nietzsche once and again shows his readers, by means of psychological and genealogical unmasking, that the effects of their inauthenticity include stagnation, inhibition of creativity, depression, and above all, dissolution of their selves ‑‑ effects most of us consider undesirable.

Nietzsche’s genealogy attempts to examine the most important question concerning authenticity, namely, whether the Übermensch can in principle develop and live in society as such? Granted his emphasis on immanency, autarchy and extreme individuality of authentic power, is it compatible with morality? Since Nietzsche affirms “a community”[xvii] and does not seek to destroy it, he must explain how the morality of authenticity is at all possible within the social context, and analyze the nature of the interaction among its members. This is what he does in his genealogical inquiry, where he maintains that genuine justice is possible only within a social fabric composed of equally powerful members (ibid., sec. 8). Only an individual who possesses an abundance of positive power and firm authentic selfhood is able to grant similar rights and freedoms to all those whom he recognizes as his equals. He is not afraid that this might diminish or destroy his own authentic power. It is the self‑affirmation of one’s power and virtues that psychologically enables (but, of course, does not necessitate) the affirmation of others and their authenticity.

Nietzsche does not reject the ‘negative’ (inauthentic) types of power/pathos because they are less true. They are rejected as detrimental and destructive to his ideal of personal authenticity, which is concretized in the notion of the Übermensch in whom the will to power becomes identical with the will to authenticity. Nietzsche is aware that such a personality cannot be realized completely; the Übermensch provides only a regulative idea, a model to approximate and emulate. It is a corrective to the over‑emphasis on the equality, the objectivity, the levelling processes of modernity that result in dissolution of the self. And indeed Nietzsche does not offer concrete examples of the Übermensch, always being careful not to attach to this notion any historical name:

“To be a human being with one elevated feeling ‑‑ to be a single great mood incarnate ‑‑ that has hitherto been a mere dream and a delightful possibility; as yet history does not offer us any certain examples.” (G.S., sec. 288).

In the absence of a historical example that could provide an appropriate model, Nietzsche relied on his literary imagination. Zarathustra became a literary paradigm of how art could lead to authenticity. Sublime, enticing descriptions rather than authoritative prescriptions are offered to awaken us from our inauthentic (or Trumpists) slumbers. Nietzsche’s tactics of enticement were intended to induce in us a desire for the pathos of authenticity. And for those already searching, Nietzsche tries to entice them to intensify their quest.

The attempt “to become who you are” must be carried out alone, through one’s own mental resources. Nonetheless, it is possible to arouse, to educate, and to entice others to do this without constraining their free self‑achievement.

For a succinct summary let us draw the table of two respective power patterns assembled from Nietzsche’s major writings[xviii]:


Patterns of Negative Power Patterns of Positive Power
Lack or impoverishment of power

Fullness and abundance of power



Melancholy and suspension of action. Elation and dynamic vitality
Heteronomous dependence upon external

circumstances and resources.

Autonomous creation of values;


Violence (Gewalt) and cruel exploitation as

means for enhancement of a feeble power.


Violence as solely a

by-product of the spontaneous

manifestation of power.

A tendency to escape to transcendent

principles, to various metaphysical types of consolation, to personify nature. In brief to

find a shelter under all redundant “Shadows

of the Dead God”

A world-view of complete immanency


Self castration, depression and repression

of instincts.

Creative sublimation of instincts.
Ascetic patterns of life Aesthetic life.
Dogmatism and extremism Intellectual tolerance.
Vengefulness and ressentiment Generosity and nobility.
Cowardice and pursuit of security.



Courage and adventurousness a

tendency “to live dangerously!


Escape to sickness. “Dangerous health”
Nihilism, decadence and fatigue: the

preservation of being;

“strong instinct”, “will to life”; enhance of being
“Hatred out of fear”.


“Refined contempt”


The “need to be enslaved” Nobility and the will to be a master.
Resignation and submissiveness. amor fati, self-acceptance and affirmation: “the Yes-

saying pathos”

Pessimism and “thought of death”. “thought of life”, sober and enlightened


Fear of natural inclinations Sensualism and acceptance of one’s


The need for system and logic. “The ability to accept contradictions”
Divided self: “dividuum Harmonious self and genuine “individuum


“Internal distress and uncertainty”


Lack of guilt feelings; clear conscience


Shrewdness, intelligence and


Spontaneous, direct and impulsive


Nationalism and petty politics Life beyond the national borders within

international cultural European community:

the “great politics”.

This table describes in a nutshell Nietzsche’s anthropological dichotomy between the two existentialist profiles or persons: one endowed with positive power and the other devoid of it. Reading this table, one becomes pretty sure to which column Trump and his followers surely belong.

Footnotes & References

[i] Nietzsche, Human, All Too Human: A Book for Free Spirits, trans. R. J. Hollingdale, Cambridge University Press, 1986, section 482. In what follows the quotations from Nietzsche’s compositions refer to the number of sections   and not to the number of the page. The only exceptions are the quotations of Nietzsche’s books which are not divided by short aphorisms such as Thus Spoke Zarathustra, Schopenhauer as Educator, The Birth of Tragedy and On the Genealogy of Morals.

[ii] This is especially noteworthy given the recent debate about whether Trump is an Ayn Rand acolyte:: I owe this note to Guillaume Attia who kindly shared with me this insight/thoughtful comment.

[iii] The present article relies on more comprehensive presentations found in my following publications: Nietzsche’s Enticing Psychology of Power, (Blackwell, 1989); Nietzsche, the Godfather of Fascism? On the Uses and Abuses of a Philosophy, eds. Jacob Golomb and Robert S. Wistrich, (Princeton University Press, 2002); Nietzsche and Zion, (Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press, 2004); ‘Nietzsche on Authenticity, ‘ Philosophy Today, 34 (1990): 243-258;             ‘Will to Power: Does It Lead to the ‘Coldest of All Cold Monsters’?’ in The Oxford Handbook of Nietzsche, eds. Ken Gemes and John Richardson, (Oxford University Press, 2013, pp. 523-550.

[iv] For details see my book: In Search of Authenticity from Kierkegaard to Camus, Routledge: London, New York, 1995.

[v] Nietzsche, Philosophy in the Tragic Age of the Greeks, trans. M. Cowan, Chicago: Henry Regnery, 1962, p. 25.

[vi] Nietzsche, The Gay Science, trans. Walter Kaufmann, New York: Random House, 1974 .

[vii] Which is Nietzsche’s formula for personal authenticity and figures in the sub-title of his intellectual autobiography: Ecce Homo: How One Becomes What One Is, trans. Walter Kaufmann, New York: Random House, 1969, p. 217.

[viii] And read chapter 5 of my Nietzsche’s Enticing Psychology of Power above-mentioned in endnote III.

[ix] Nietzsche, The Birth of Tragedy, trans. Walter Kaufmann, New York: Random House, 1967, p. 37.

[x] Schopenhauer as Educator, trans. R.J. Hollingdale, Cambridge University Press, 1983, p. 129. Quoted henceforth by the abbreviation: S.E.

[xi] Thus a his faithful follower Sigmund Freud who always suspected a direct approach to our mental, mostly unconscious life and analyzed no the verbal direct behavir of his patients but mainly their dreams, slit of tongues, free associations and so forth. A close comparison between Nietzsche’s genealogical psychology and Freudian psychoanalysis (theory as well as practice) can be found in my Nietzsche’s Enticing Psychology of Power (endnote 3).

[xii] Thus Spoke Zarathustra, First Part: ‘On the Three Metamorphoses’ trans. Walter Kaufmann, in The Portable Nietzsche, New York: The Viking Press, 1954 , p. 137 henceforth quoted as Z.

[xiii] G.S. 346. On Kierkegard’s teaching about an authentic believer see chapter 3 in a book mentioned on endnote 4.

[xiv] Beyond Good and Evil, trans. Walter Kaufmann, New York: Random House, 1966, sec. 30, henceforth: B.G.E.

[xv] Daybreak, trans. R.J. Hollingdale, Cambidge University Press, 1982, sec. 65 .

[xvi] Read Chapter 3 of my In Search of Authenticity, endnote IV above.

[xvii] Nietzsche, On the Genealogy of Morals, trans. Walter Kaufmann and R.J. Hollingdale, New York: Random House, 1969, Second Essay, sec. 9.

[xviii] For a detailed elaboration of this fundamental anthropological distinction and for more extensive textual references see: Part Three of my Nietzsche’s Enticing Psychology of Power, endnote III above.

Jacob Golomb
Jacob Golomb
Jacob Golomb is Ahad Ha-am professor of philosophy at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the philosophical editor of the Hebrew University Magnes Press. He was a visiting professor of philosophy at the Penn State University and a member of Wolfson College, Oxford. Among his many vices are some books: Nietzsche's Enticing Psychology of Power (1989), Introduction to Philosophies of Existence (1990), In Search of Authenticity: from Kierkegaard to Camus (Routledge, 1995), Nietzsche in Zion (Cornell U.P., 2004), The Hebrew Nietzsche (2009) etc. Edited Nietzsche and Jewish Culture (Routledge,1997), Nietzsche and the Austrian Culture (Wien, 2004) and the Hebrew Magnes best seller edition of Nietzsche's Human, All Too Human (2008). Co-edited: Nietzsche and Depth Psychology (SUNY Press, 1999), Nietzsche, Godfather of Fascism? (Princeton U.P. 2002) and Beauvoir and Sartre: The Riddle of Influence (Indiana University Press, 2009. Recently compiled a Hebrew edition of Nietzsche's letters.

“How many newsworthy issues, which should have been the rightful domain of philosophy, have been usurped in recent years by religion, law, and psychology?”

Lee McIntyre

Contact Us

We're not around right now. But you can send us an email and we'll get back to you, asap.

Not readable? Change text. captcha txt

Start typing and press Enter to search