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Twilight of the Idols/The Antichrist (Philosophical Classics)

4.15  ·  Rating Details ·  6,446 Ratings  ·  147 Reviews
In 1888, the last sane year of his life Nietsche produced these two brief but devastating books.

Twilight of the Idols, 'a grand declaration of war' on all the prevalent ideas of his time, offers a lightning tour of his whole philosophy. It also prepares the way for The Anti-Christ, a final assault on institutional Christianity. Yet although Nietzsche makes a compelling cas

paperback, 144 pages
Published February 2nd 2004 by Dover Publications (first published 1889)
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Jun 19, 2007 Carolyn added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who doesn't get offended easily
Shelves: philosophy
Twilight of the Idols is one of my favorite books of all time. My favorite quote from the book is, "To attack the passions at their roots means to attack life at its roots." Nietzsche is, as has often been said, religion for philosophers. This book is about the meaning of life, mostly, and how we should conduct ourselves in light of that meaning, or lack thereof. At the time, I was coming from a Judeo-Christian background, though I wasn't a Christian any longer, and it really opened my eyes to o ...more
John David
May 24, 2012 John David rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
“Twilight of the Idols” and “The Anti-Christ” are two of the last books, both composed in 1888, that Nietzsche wrote before his final descent into syphilis-induced madness which occurred during the first week of 1889. It continues themes he had developed in his earlier work, and “The Anti-Christ” especially approaches Christianity with a particularly ferocious and critical eye.

As anyone who has thumbed through a volume of Nietzsche can tell you, his work isn’t composed of clear, well-defined pr
Dec 03, 2007 Eliot rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Late Nietzsche is amazing. Finally freed from the constraints of even remotely making sense or forming coherent arguments, Nietzsche invites his readers to make up more or less anything and attribute it to these books. The best part is that, if one were inclined to feel guilty about such loose attributions, by this point in his corpus Nietzsche has already gotten you over any such compunctions.
Twilight of the Idols and The Antichrist are two short books combined into one. The first is a collection of ideas, opinions and conjectures and the other is his criticism of christianity. My first impression of Twilight of the Idols was that Nietzsche was a bit hysterical … (it was all those exclamation marks)., but it turns out that he was a curmudgeon. He was not impressed with how the German populace was being educated – the teachers! He thought that people now were not taught how to see, to ...more
Apr 10, 2008 Trevor rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
I had to read this in my Introduction to Philosophy at uni a lifetime ago. My one memory of it that really stands out is how annoyed he made me. I mean, this guy was trashing Socrates – and I’ve always been rather fond of Socrates – and the criticism seemed quite pathetic. I mean, criticising Socrates because he was ugly! What sort of argument is that? Is this really ‘philosophy’?

This book ends with the line, “I, the last disciple of the philosopher Dionysus — I, the teacher of the eternal recur
David Sarkies
Jul 23, 2011 David Sarkies rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
More Disjointed Thoughts of an Angry Philosopher
20 October 2010

I found this book in the bible college library and as such decided that I had to read it (who would expect to find Nietzsche, a man who hated Christianty, in the library of a Bible College – the again this wasn't a fundamentalist, can't have any books that aren't written by approved authors in the library type of Bible College). However he was there, and I decided to read him. It also help that in my Church History lecture we looked
Jeremy Ra
Dec 01, 2010 Jeremy Ra rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Misinterpreted and abused, the infamy of Nietzsche needs no further comment. Even Nietzsche himself has foreseen what might become of his theories when he dedicated the book to all and none. Yet his mysterious aphorisms completely altered the course of intellectual current, and the thoughts that he provoked are still radical and surprising, not to mention relevant.

Although known best by many to have authored the Will to Power, the sagacity that Nietzsche possessed culminates in its fullest gran
Oh Friedrich, how I love a polemic... and while your flaws are glaring as all hell to even the most inane reader, you still say some shit that's just as refreshingly radical today as it was in the late 19th Century. What so many people don't realize about Nietzsche, I think, is how secretly Nietzschean they themselves are. Recommended to all snarky antitheists, die-hard materialists, and general rabble-rousers.
Oct 30, 2008 Kam rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Really amazing stuff. Eye-opening. My first true reading experience of Nietzsche. Even if you disagree with them, the thought that goes into this, the imagination, the excellent questions and questioning -- everybody should read this guy!
Jun 29, 2014 Dionysus rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, philosophy
Two brilliant, scorching works of pyrophilosphy produced as Nietzsche, that bright burning sun, went supernova. As delightful as all his writing is, he never wrote so wonderfully, so beautifully, in such an enrapturing, searing polemical style as he did in 1888, when he produced Twilight of the Idols and The Anti-Christ. These works, alongside Zarathustra, represent a sort of summation of Nietzsche's passion - and this is what Nietzsche was: not a sober-minded empiricist building a body of knowl ...more
John Martindale
I have a friend that shared with me how if there is no God, then Nietzsche makes perfect sense; for his philosophy naturally follows from the assumption that "God is dead". Oh man, if this is so, then this books makes me desperately hope there is a God! Nietzsche scorns Christian morality, which is arguably the very foundation for western civilization. With fanatic zeal he tries to saw off the limb upon which he sits. With a moralistic passion he derides self-control, mercy, equality and kindnes ...more
Jan 04, 2017 Jessica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So much ink has been spilled on Nietzsche commentary that there's not much to say. Has the legacy of the Platonic, transmitted as it was through Judeo-Christian culture, robbed modern humanity of the earthly joys of living? Is the rejection of the material world in favor of the spiritual a false duality that will haunt Western intellectual life forever? They're questions well worth considering.
Jun 25, 2014 Fil rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
There is no doubt that Nietzsche was a great thinker, this is apparent in these two works. It is also quite apparent he was a terrible man.

Twilight of the Idols: Rife with contradiction, I got the impression much was said for shock value. He uses the Sudra to show the horrors morality supposedly inflicts on social classes, but immediately afterwards laments the equality we are faced with today. A more amusing contradiction, however, is his take on morality as a concept. He writes that "[moral j
Ralowe Ampu
Jul 10, 2013 Ralowe Ampu rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
it's a struggle to hold nietzsche in the same space as a resistance to empire, because his allegiances resist being parsed, not that people need to be quantified, but when trying to do history it's a struggle to be coherent in providing an accout of civilizational discontents or what is found to be urgently distressing in the social order. nietzsche then becomes bracingly incoherent as he appears to contradict, passionately promoting what he passionately despises. all that appears consistent is ...more
Jun 22, 2014 Brian rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I've read a lot of different books in my lifetime. Greek tragedies, Shakespearean plays, Modern Sci-Fi, Even Tolstoy, But none of them were full of hate. Nietzsche may have had a difficult life because of his illness. He may even have been an incredibly intelligent man. A Genius even. But he was also an ass. And I mean a Huge ass. He spews hate. I think he revels in it. He also is an ego maniac. I knew going into this book that the man had an inflated ego and was strongly anti-christian. But he ...more
Alice Watkins
Jan 29, 2015 Alice Watkins rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I came into this book without too much background knowledge on German politics and history of the 19th century, which meant that a lot of the references Nietzsche made were fairly lost on me in the first quarter of the book, but once he started focusing on the "idols" of culture and philosophy, I settled into the first text a lot better. I would recommend it to anyone that's read a fair amount of Nietzsche and wants to find out about where his possible influences come from, since he spends a lon ...more
David Zerangue
Nov 09, 2010 David Zerangue rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
This was an excellent read. Eveyrthing you have silently questioned, Nietzsche has placed on paper. The titles may create misgivings amongst the religious community, but they should really take a moment to explore what he has put forth. The Twilight of the Idols represents a collection of various thoughts and points interspersed with a lot of ravings against people he did not uphold. Getting past those ravings leaves you with some very wise prose. The Anti-Christ targets the aftermath of Jesus' ...more
Troy Neujahr
Jun 11, 2016 Troy Neujahr rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Anti-Christ is quite fascinating simply from the perspective of its blatant vehemence poured out upon Christianity. Nietzsche's hubris is astounding as he lays claim to a greatness of life, strength, and thought that very few may obtain. And yet within this book I see the seeds of modern culture's disdain for the faith, for revelation, for humility. Eye-opening as it is revealing.
Mar 06, 2008 Brandon rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Crap. His arguments aren't with Christ, they're with two thousand years of (mostly) Catholic history. And people don't just "go" crazy, right? If he was crazy the year after he wrote this, can't you be safe in saying he was mostly crazy already?
Jan 12, 2016 Gina rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nietzsche was an angry man. Wow.

That's all I've got. I'm completely taken aback by this read.
Nov 06, 2016 Conor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-non_fiction
Somehow, in adding books to goodreads, I forgot I read this. Several times.

I read this first in high-school, and it's a perfect book to be introduced to Nietzsche with. The aphorisms have a lot of punch and they're easy to get something out of - and even more if you're not a high-schooler reading them. I still enjoyed these books years later, and if I only give it five stars, it's because there's better Nietzsche to read.
Nick Barefoot
Jan 03, 2017 Nick Barefoot rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A breath of fresh air after reading CS Lewis.
Rikuo Kanda
Feb 14, 2017 Rikuo Kanda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"The Four Great Errors" may possibly be the most enlightening piece of text I have ever read. One must understand to not read Nietzsche literally -- he is a provocateur -- a thinker who wounds with his "hammer." In our healing, our understanding of being is transformed.
I really can't give 'stars' to rate this book because it doesn't really matter whether I like what Nietzsche is saying or not; it's already impacted so much of how we live. All I can say is it's worth reading if you wish to explore human nature and morality.
Dec 31, 2016 Caroline rated it it was amazing
Transvaluation love letters, the God of the Nooks
TuVan Nguyen
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Matthew Mattia
There is a lot of richness in Nietzsche that goes beyond him personally; there is a non-prejudicial way of using most of his ideas even though he took some past the point of skeptical self-control he advocated, to the extreme, to conviction, which he himself argued against.

He asks us to be skeptics, but he takes his ideas to the extremes and by doing so distorts reality.

That said, there was much to be interacted with seriously, to be thought about, to be learned from.


1. Will to life (partici
May 18, 2011 David rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
This is an intense read, at times ecstatic at times repetitive but Nietzsche's powerful prose takes you along for the ride. In Twilight of the idols he attacks his former heroes, this is consistent with any intellectual the more knowledge that is gained and truth that is sought, what previously was held as great will become trivial. Its just that Nietzsche attacks some quite renowned people like Socrates and Wagner. There are many words of wisdom that i think anyone can relate to for example he ...more
John Martin Ladrido
This book belongs to the very few. Perhaps none of them is even living yet.

When a man feels that he has a divine mission, say to lift up, to save or to liberate mankind—when a man feels the divine spark in his heart and believes that he is the mouthpiece of super natural imperatives—when such a mission inflames him, it is only natural that he should stand beyond all merely reasonable standards of judgment. He feels that he is himself sanctified by this mission, that he is himself a type of a hi
Minh Quan Nguyen
My review is about the book twilight of the idols. The anti-christ is another important book and need a another review of it.

The best review of these kinds of book of Nietzsche is a quote from him in this book:

my ambition is to say in ten sentences what other people say in a book and what other people do not say in a book ...

This is a book like that. In this book, you can find Nietzsche thoughts about so many things: morality, religion, education, music, other great thinkers he knew … This is a
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  • Philosophical Fragments (Writings, Vol 7)
  • The Fragile Absolute: Or, Why Is the Christian Legacy Worth Fighting For?
  • The Blue and Brown Books
  • Nietzsche: Philosopher, Psychologist, Antichrist
  • Prolegomena to Any Future Metaphysics
  • Basic Writings: Ten Key Essays, plus the Introduction to Being and Time
  • Essays and Aphorisms
  • Early Greek Philosophy
  • What Is Philosophy?
  • Spurs: Nietzsche's Styles/Eperons: Les Styles de Nietzsche
  • A Kierkegaard Anthology
  • Conversations of Socrates
  • Minima Moralia: Reflections from a Damaged Life
  • The Accursed Share 1: Consumption
  • Philosophical Hermeneutics
Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1844–1900) is a German philosopher of the late 19th century who challenged the foundations of Christianity and traditional morality. He was interested in the enhancement of individual and cultural health, and believed in life, creativity, power, and the realities of the world we live in, rather than those situated in a world beyond. Central to his philosophy is the ide ...more
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“Thus the man who is responsive to artistic stimuli reacts to the reality of dreams as does the philosopher to the reality of existence; he observes closely, and he enjoys his observation: for it is out of these images that he interprets life, out of these processes that he trains himself for life.” 28 likes
“Reason" in language - oh, what an old deceptive female she is! I am afraid we are not rid of God because we still have faith in grammar.” 15 likes
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