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Nietzsche, the self, and the disunity of philosophical reason

Gardner, S; (2009) Nietzsche, the self, and the disunity of philosophical reason. In: Gemes, K and May, S, (eds.) Nietzsche on Freedom and Autonomy. Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK. Green open access


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This chapter offers a critical discussion of Nietzsche's treatment of the self. It is argued first that Nietzsche's eliminativist-cum-fictionalist theoretical account of the self is inconsistent with the role Nietzsche accords first-person thinking in practical and axiological contexts. This raises the question of how in general Nietzsche regards the relation of the practical and the theoretical. Two metaphilosophical characterisations of Nietzsche's philosophical project are then considered: the naturalistic reading of Brian Leiter, and a quasi-transcendental reading which regards Nietzsche as attempting to construct a unity of philosophical reason. The chapter suggests that, although the latter has important advantages over the former, neither is ultimately satisfactory in exegetical respects. Nietzsche considers it impossible for us, as we now are, to achieve overall unity of philosophical reason, and this is the import of the Third Essay of On the Genealogy of Morals.

Type: Book chapter
Title: Nietzsche, the self, and the disunity of philosophical reason
ISBN-13: 9780199231560
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199231560.003.0001
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199231560...
Language: English
Additional information: Chapter 1, Nietzsche on Freedom and Autonomy, edited by Ken Gemes and Simon May, 2009, reproduced by permission of Oxford University Press: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199231560.003.0001.
Keywords: self, practical, naturalism, Leiter, transcendental, genealogy of morals
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Dept of Philosophy
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/93399
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