As the spider spins : essays on Nietzsche's Critique and use of language (Nietzche Today) (Nietzsche Today)

As the spider spins : essays on Nietzsche's Critique and use of language (Nietzche Today) (Nietzsche Today)

João Constâncio

Language: English

Pages: 313

ISBN: 3110280906

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Nietzsche's metaphor of the spider that spins its cobweb expresses his critique of the metaphysical use of language - but it also suggests that ‟we, spiders‟, are able to spin different, life-affirming, healthier, non-metaphysical cobwebs. This book is a collection of 12 essays that focus not only on Nietzsche's critique of the metaphysical assumptions of language, but also on his effort to use language in a different way, i.e., to create a ‟new language‟. It is from this viewpoint that the book considers such themes as consciousness, the self, metaphor, instinct, affectivity, style, morality, truth, and knowledge. The authors invited to contribute to this volume are Nietzsche scholars who belong to some of the most important research centers of the European Nietzsche-Research: Centro Colli-Montinari (Italy), GIRN (Europhilosphie), SEDEN (Spain), Greifswald Research Group (Germany), NIL (Portugal). In 2011 João Constâncio and Maria João Mayer Branco edited Nietzsche on Instinct and Language, also published by Walter de Gruyter. The two books complement each other.

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position may be explained if we take into account that the conceivability of the thing-in-itself depends, for Kant, on the possibility of an intellectus archetypus, i.e., a divine intellect that could know things by means of an intellectual intuition. Schopenhauer does not consider this kind of knowledge a possibility. Nietzsche, too, does not need the idea of an intellectus archetypus in order to conceive of the existence of things-in-themselves. 51 There are some hints of the “agnostic”

but stimuli (Reize): he does not reproduce sensations (Empfindungen), but merely copies (Abbildungen) of sensations. The sensation, evoked through a nervous stimulus (Nervenreiz), does not take in the thing in itself: this sensation is presented externally through an image (Bild). However, we must ask ourselves how an activity of the soul can be represented by a sound image (Tonbild) […]. Things do not enter our consciousness – only our way of relating to them enters our consciousness” (KGW II/4,

life, of reflecting on the constellation of incorporated drives, routines, habits, customs that constitute our second nature. Nietzsche’s work compels us to reflect about the leeways of an active modification of this second nature. Although in GS 354/FW 354 Nietzsche presents his anti-metaphysical and pragmatist theory about the origin of consciousness as hypothetical, the idea of a private language – a language that could designate our individual actions before their being levelled down in the

this, such as ‘selflessness’ and the denial of natural instincts, but in the only section concerning ‘bad conscience’ in Beyond Good and Evil – the book of which he intends the Genealogy to provide ‘a supplement and clarification’, as he indicates on the latter’s title page – he refers to conceptions of political obligations as ‘unconditional’ in the sense of holding for any agent in relevantly similar circumstances.32 This implies that, for Nietzsche, the fulfilment of political obligations

of the “new language”, that Nietzsche believes to be establishing in order to radically express new modes of thought, will enable us to understand the status and importance of such “rhetorical” statements which are so abundant in Nietzsche’s texts. To the question, which we certainly cannot ignore: “do they have an ornamental or a philosophical value?”,9 we must answer that, given that the distinctions between philosophical and rhetorical language, as well as between conceptual and pictorial

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