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Reason and Existenz; five lectures. Translated with an introd. by William Earle.
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Jaspers, Karl, (1883-1969.)

Reason and Existenz; five lectures. Translated with an introd. by William Earle.

[New York, Noonday Press, 1955]

Abstract: With the publication of Reason and Existenz, originally delivered as a series of five lectures at the University of Groningen in 1935, one of the most important of Jaspers's philosophic works is made available to the English-speaking world. It concerns itself with a general statement of the principal philosophic categories which have given uniqueness to Jaspers's thinking: existence, freedom, and history, and the limit-situations of death, suffering, and sin. Written shortly after Jaspers's major systematic work and before his analysis of the problem of truth, Reason and Existenz occupies a primary position in the development of his thought.

Nietzsche, philosopher, psychologist, antichrist
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Kaufmann, Walter Arnold.

Nietzsche, philosopher, psychologist, antichrist / by Walter Kaufmann.

4th ed.

Princeton, N.J. : Princeton University Press, 1974.

Abstract: This classic is the benchmark against which all modern books about Nietzsche are measured. When Walter Kaufmann wrote it in the immediate aftermath of World War II, most scholars outside Germany viewed Nietzsche as part madman, part proto-Nazi, and almost wholly unphilosophical. Kaufmann rehabilitated Nietzsche nearly single-handedly, presenting his works as one of the great achievements of Western philosophy. Responding to the powerful myths and countermyths that had sprung up around Nietzsche, Kaufmann offered a patient, evenhanded account of his life and works, and of the uses and abuses to which subsequent generations had put his ideas.Without ignoring or downplaying the ugliness of many of Nietzsche's proclamations, he set them in the context of his work as a whole and of the counterexamples yielded by a responsible reading of his books. More positively, he presented Nietzsche's ideas about power as one of the great accomplishments of modern philosophy, arguing that his conception of the "will to power" was not a crude apology for ruthless self-assertion but must be linked to Nietzsche's equally profound ideas about sublimation.He also presented Nietzsche as a pioneer of modern psychology and argued that a key to understanding his overall philosophy is to see it as a reaction against Christianity. Many scholars in the past half century have taken issue with some of Kaufmann's interpretations, but the book ranks as one of the most influential accounts ever written of any major Western thinker.

Nihilism & emancipation
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Vattimo, Gianni <1936->

Nihilism & emancipation : ethics, politics, and law / Gianni Vattimo ; edited by Santiago Zabala ; translated by William McCuaig.

New York : Columbia University Press, c2004.

European perspectives

Abstract: A daring marriage of philosophical theory and practical politics, this collection is the first of Gianni Vattimo's many books to combine his intellectual pursuits with his public and political life. Vattimo is a paradoxical figure, at once a believing Christian and a vociferous critic of the Catholic Church, an outspoken liberal but not a former communist, and a recognized authority on Nietzsche and Heidegger as well as a prominent public intellectual and member of the European parliament. Building on his unique position as a philosopher and politician, Vattimo takes on some of the most pressing questions of our time: Is it still possible, long after Nietzsche proclaimed the death of God, to talk of moral imperatives, individual rights, or political freedom? Are these values still relevant in today's world? Tackling these crucial issues, Gianni Vattimo argues that nihilism is not the absence of meaning but a recognition of a plurality of meanings; it is not the end of civilization but the beginning of new social paradigms. Commonly associated with the pessimistic belief that all of existence is meaningless, nihilism, as a philosophical principle, is far less sensational-it is the ethical doctrine that there are no moral absolutes or infallible natural laws, that "truth" is inescapably subjective. Because the conditions for equality and liberty are not "naturally" given, society must actively create these ideals or it will inevitably fall prey to irrationality, prejudice, and oppression. Vattimo contends that the infighting, timidity, and confusion that have overtaken contemporary liberal thought and politics are the products a prolonged and indulgent mourning over the loss of the transcendental father figure-any institution or power structure that defines truth, knowledge, and reality. Until humanity overcomes its need for external authority-whether it be organized religion, the nation-state, or free-market capitalism-emancipation will remain unattainable. Collecting fourteen of Vattimo's most influential essays on ethics, politics, and law, Nihilism and Emancipation is a provocative reevaluation of meaning, values, and the idea of freedom in Western culture.