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POL117 mid study guide

POL117 mid study guide - POL117 Fall 2011 Nietzsches...

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POL117 Fall 2011 Nietzsche’s Critique of Modernity Midterm Study Guide Identifications You will be asked to define FOUR of the following terms (2.5 Points Each) (Approx. 8 minutes each). THERE WILL BE NO CHOICE OF TERMS. 1. The death of God This is how Nietzsche sees the modern condition, he means that all of the highest values that used to give meaning and significance to western humanity have lost their value. People have no profound sense of meaning to higher spirit. This condition in which God is dead is called nihilism. We now use religion as a “self-help” guide. -Humans thought of ancestors as creditors, started to deify them > death of god is essentially the death of the ancestors. God has been replaced by the state aka the thing that controls the creditor/debtor system. 2. Master/noble morality (i.e. the value couplet “good and bad”) Initially, to be “good” was simply an affirmation of the status of the fortunate. They were good because they were wealthy and strong. “Bad” in this case was how they referred to the less fortunate. Both were not qualities of the soul but rather affirmations of being. (She isn’t looking for us to describe the value couplet good v evil here, just good v bad: good was a self-definition of the noble warrior class and bad sort of arose as an afterthought) However, those unfortunate classes, led by the priests, overturned the meanings as an act of resentment(revenge). What was once good is now considered evil (strength, power) and what was once bad is now considered good (being weak, humble). This unconscious exercise of the will to power soon came to define the qualities of souls and represented the attempt to suppress one’s passions. -was the starting point of Christian morality. 3. Bad conscience It arose when strong warrior types come into loose communities and force them into a fixed form . The established fixed political communities or states a nd they enclosed these people within societies and forced them to live in peace with each other . The moment you enclose human beings in established society and force them to be good to one another you turn their animal instincts inward - nowhere for their instincts to go other than to themselves-cruelty to themselves- brought on pleasure of cruelty. Nietzsche calls this moment of bad conscience arising the first inversion of the will -all going back to us - bad conscience will to bad self treatment - this is how you suppress instinct . then you get good and evil arising One thing to note is that clearly he does not believe in an original social contract there was an imposition Nietzsche tells us that the concept of guilt/bad conscience becomes immoralized with the concept of god what happens is that people feel immense debt to ancestors as society becomes more established at some point the ancestors become idolized to the point that they take on a guise of a god
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guilt, debt and duty becomes pushed back into bad conscience it means that bad conscience begins to eat man up
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POL117 mid study guide - POL117 Fall 2011 Nietzsches...

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