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The Affirmation of Life: Nietzsche on Overcoming Nihilism

4.07  ·  Rating Details ·  58 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
Among all the great thinkers of the past two hundred years, Nietzsche continues to occupy a special place--not only for a broad range of academics but also for members of a wider public, who find some of their most pressing existential concerns addressed in his works. Central among these concerns is the question of the meaning of a life characterized by inescapable sufferi ...more
Hardcover, 312 pages
Published April 30th 2006 by Harvard University Press
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Joshua Nomen-Mutatio
Feb 03, 2010 Joshua Nomen-Mutatio rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Aspiring Yes-Sayers
"Have you ever said Yes to a single joy? O my friends, then you have said Yes too to all woe. All things are entangled, ensnared, enamored; if ever you wanted one thing twice, if ever you said, "You please me, happiness! Abide moment!" then you wanted all back. All anew, all eternally, all entangled, ensnared, enamored--oh then you loved the world. Eternal ones, love it eternally and evermore; and to woe too, you say: go, but return! For all joy wants--eternity."

— Friedrich Nietzsche (Thus Spake
Nov 12, 2010 Tyler rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Philosophy Fans
Shelves: philosophy
Nietzsche's epigrammatic and esoteric books lend themselves to so much misinterpretation and confusion that one should never turn down a chance to get clarification. I found this the perfect book for that purpose.

Bernard Reginster's 290 pages include a useful 20-page introduction and a surprisingly interesting footnote section at the end, also about 20 pages. The four chapters, or sections, of the book concentrate on Nietzsche's ethics.

Reginster emphasizes Nietzsche's two unprecedented contribu
May 20, 2012 Shaun rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: those who are interested in the philosophy of Nietzsche.
As suggested by the title of the book, Reginster considers Nitzsche’s biggest crisis as nihilism. And the way to overcome it is by affirming life, regardless of any absolute and objective meaning of life, which, according to Reginster, is Nietzsche’s biggest philosophical achievement.

Reginster takes a systematic approach to Nietzsche’s works and the book brings out two major theses: (1) a systematic view of Nietzsche’s account on affirming life, and (2) a project of a revaluation of values, whic
Matthew Thompson
Oct 08, 2011 Matthew Thompson rated it really liked it
Reginster is a rich and subtle reader of Nietzsche. I particularly appreciate his passages on Nietzsche's concept of happiness as being active (creativity's overcoming of resistance) rather than a state of contentment. There's much to ponder there for a society massing luxuries while gobbling anti-depressants.
Apr 24, 2008 Alexander rated it it was amazing
this book is very helpful for those who want a deeper understanding of nietzsche and his work/ideas. reginster takes the stance that nietzsche's main philosophical project was the affirmation of life and avoidance of nihilism. taking the whole of nietzsche's body of works, those published during and after his life, and couching the analysis through much of schopenhauer's philosophy (who was very influencial on nietzsche), reginster accounts for nietzsche's claims about the sources of nihilism - ...more
Mar 20, 2016 Chris rated it it was amazing
Shelves: moral-philosophy
This book is an excellent work of scholarship on Nietzsche. It argues, correctly in my view, against over-hyped claims that Nietzsche is purposely anti-systematic thinker to show that the problem of nihilism is the central issue in his philosophy and that he presents a systematic response to it. Register displays a command of Nietzsche's writings to develop and defend his view. Along the way the discusses a variety of key themes in Nietzsche's philosophy including nihilism, self-overcoming/self- ...more
Arjun Ravichandran
Feb 19, 2013 Arjun Ravichandran rated it it was ok
I don't know why, for such a radical thinker who surged with creative energy and was resolutely opposed to any sort of philosophical methodology, Nietzsche attracts the most boring of interpreters. The book is dense and filled with jargon ; I don't mind this if the jargon is due to legitimate complexity of the concepts. But this book just bears the hallmark of bad and obscure writing. There is too much waffling and unnecessary repetition. A few of the points were interesting ; but I would not re ...more
Justin Van Kleeck
Oct 07, 2010 Justin Van Kleeck rated it liked it
A very insightful and convincing examination of Nietzsche's perspectives on life, morality, and creativity. A bit problematic in its reliance on Will to Power (which is a mock-up book, nothing N ever planned to publish), and it (like most critical accounts) overstates the importance of many of N's nostrums. But still very interesting.
Feb 26, 2010 Jacob rated it really liked it
A good amount to engage and disagree with here, especially on the issue of Nietzsche's meta-ethics. Nevertheless, anyone interested in Nietzsche should read Reginster's chapter on the will to power.
Jan 01, 2014 Alexander added it
Shelves: philosophy
I don't know Nietzsche well enough to have views about a lot of Reginster's central claims, but I found the book extremely helpful and illuminating.
Jan 24, 2013 Daniel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm almost finished this. All of my concerns about Nihilism and Nietzsche are laid out bare in this work.
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