Most helpful critical review
influential, but not, in my opinion, a 'great philosopher'
on April 25, 2000
I find Nietzsche's character extremely intersting and admit that his influence on philosophers and culture of this century is hardly negligible. However, I find his works, particularly Zarathustra, lacking in 'philosophy' and more as evidence of a man who led a very sad life.
There are certainly elements from the work deserving to be preserved, if not simply for their historical significance. Among other things, the almost Kantian criticism of belief in the supernatural in Part One still bears relevence.
A chief complaint, however, is that the exact character of the Superman is vaguely defined. He is a man who must assign his own meaning to life and define his whole existence by his own 'virtue', and thus grow beyond good and evil. However, how is one to choose his own virtue, and what is to happen when virtues conflict? Zarathustra speaks of going to war for one's virtue, but what exactly are we to interpret from this?
More than anything, though, I find this book lacking in style. It is very hard to comprehend because of the tedious metaphors, allegories and symbolisms. Every point is also expounded in excess. Once I finally dragged myself through this text, though, I found myself disappointed at what was to be found in the writings of this 'great philosopher'.