Nietzsche, Power and Politics: Rethinking Nietzsche's Legacy by Siemens, Herman W., Herman W. Siemans, Vasti Roodt

By Siemens, Herman W., Herman W. Siemans, Vasti Roodt

Nietzsche´s legacy for political concept is a hugely contested sector of analysis at the present time. With papers representing a large diversity of positions, this assortment takes inventory of the imperative controversies (Nietzsche as political / anti-political philosopher? Nietzsche and / contra democracy? Arendt and / contra Nietzsche?), in addition to new examine on key innovations (power, the agon, aristocracy, friendship i.a.), on old, modern and futural features of Nietzsche´s political concept. foreign members comprise recognized names (Conway, Ansell-Pearson, Hatab, Taureck, Patton, Connolly, Villa, van Tongeren) and younger rising students from numerous disciplines.

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But Jensen warns against identifying Nietzsche with the aristocrat Theognis. As an antagonist within the agon Theognis sought to rid Megara of the mercantile values he opposed; what Nietzsche values is precisely the continuation of agon – transvaluation in the sense of an open-ended agon of values – as the key to cultural and human enhancement. In this light, Nietzsche’s problem becomes: How to maintain the agon of values in the face of the tyrannical desire for hegemony driving the antagonists (Theognis) themselves?

At this point, there is an important connection between Villa’s essay and that of Vasti Roodt in the same section. Like Villa, Roodt emphasises the divide between Nietzsche and Arendt, which she similarly relates to the opposition between an essentially affective or self-directed focus in the case of the former and a public or worldly focus on the part of the latter. Roodt portrays this contrast in terms of the conflict between the furor philosophicus and the furor politicus, which can be understood as 18 Herman Siemens and Vasti Roodt the conflict between a concern with the world from the perspective of the philosopher and a similar concern from the perspective of the political thinker.

This paper illustrates well the profoundly formative influence of Nietzsche’s early philological studies in fomenting his later political thought – in this case, the concept of the agon and the practice of genealogy. According to Jensen, Nietzsche’s early work of Theognis first brought him face to face with the phenomenon of the agon in two distinct ways. The first concerns the historical transmission of Theognis, perceived by Nietzsche as an interpretative and editorial agon for power between two valuespheres, the Christian and the Greek; this motivated his philological project to rescue the pure, i.

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