Friedrich Nietzsche biography

Friedrich Nietzsche

Philosopher, Author

1844 – 1900


Who was Friedrich Nietzsche?

Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche was a German philologist, philosopher, cultural critic, poet and composer. He wrote several critical texts on religion, morality, contemporary culture, philosophy and science, displaying a fondness for metaphor, irony and aphorism.

Nietzsche's key ideas include the Apollonian/Dionysian dichotomy, perspectivism, the Will to Power, the "death of God", the Übermensch and eternal recurrence. One of the key tenets of his philosophy is the concept of "life-affirmation," which embraces the realities of the world we live now in over the idea of a world beyond. It further champions the creative powers of the individual to strive beyond social, cultural, and moral contexts. His radical questioning of the value and objectivity of truth has been the focus of extensive commentary, and his influence remains substantial, particularly in the continental philosophical schools of existentialism, postmodernism, and post-structuralism. His ideas of individual overcoming and transcendence beyond structure and context have had a profound impact on late-twentieth and early-twenty-first century thinkers, who have used these concepts as points of departure in the development of their philosophies, as seen in the social and political thought of Roberto Mangabeira Unger.

Famous Quotes:

  • The certain prospect of death could sweeten every life with a precious and fragrant drop of levity- and now you strange apothecary souls have turned it into an ill-tasting drop of poison that makes the whole of life repulsive.
  • Zarathustra was the first to consider the fight of good and evil the very wheel in the machinery of things: the transposition of morality into the metaphysical realm, as a force, cause, and end in itself, is his work. […] Zarathustra created this most calamitous error, morality; consequently, he must also be the first to recognize it.
  • All sciences are now under the obligation to prepare the ground for the future task of the philosopher, which is to solve the problem of value, to determine the true hierarchy of values.
  • All of life is a dispute over taste and tasting.
  • For the woman, the man is a means: the end is always the child.
  • Does wisdom perhaps appear on the earth as a raven which is inspired by the smell of carrion?
  • Convictions are more dangerous enemies of truth than lies.
  • Nothing has been purchased more dearly than the little bit of reason and sense of freedom which now constitutes our pride.
  • Altered opinions do not alter a man's character (or do so very little); but they do illuminate individual aspects of the constellation of his personality which with a different constellation of opinions had hitherto remained dark and unrecognizable.
  • Existence really is an imperfect tense that never becomes a present.

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Oct 15, 1844
Also known as
  • Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche
  • Nietzsche
  • Atheism
  • Germans
  • Kingdom of Prussia
  • University of Bonn
    Classical philology
    (1864 - 1865)
  • Theology
  • University of Leipzig
    Classical philology
    (1865 - )
  • Schulpforta
    (1858 - 1864/09/07)
  • University of Basel
    (1869 - 1879)
Lived in
  • Basel
  • Naumburg
Aug 25, 1900

on July 23, 2013


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