Nietzsche and the Crisis in Philosophy

Walter Kaufmann in his 1960 lecture series first discusses the general crisis in modern philosophy, before focusing on the important contributions of Friedrich Nietzsche. Kaufmann pictures Nietzsche as a revolutionary heretic and the embodiment of the Socratic spirit. He traces in Nietzsche’s works the craving for intellectual integrity, his break with Richard Wagner over the composer’s anti-Semitic and anti-French sentiments, and ultimately, his madness, ascribed to having “burned himself out.”

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