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Beyond Good and Evil by Friedrich Nietzsche

Beyond Good and Evil
Beyond Good and Evil
Friedrich Nietzsche
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Costa Books (June 5, 2012)
150 pages
PDF size:
1375 kb
FB2 size:
1659 kb
EPUB size:
1707 kb
"Beyond Good and Evil" is Nietzsche at his best. In the book the philosopher attempts to systematically sum up his philosophy through a collection of 296 aphorisms grouped into nine different chapters based on their common theme. For the reader who has yet to discover Nietzsche in this translation by Helen Zimmern will be found a fabulous introduction. For those who have already discovered Nietzsche here you will find the opportunity to understand the whole of Nietzsche's philosophy.

  • Granirad
The eBook and the version of the paperback showing the two eyes in a frame are not the Kaufmann translation. This translation is OK, but you should know that the product information is incorrect.

Additionally, the two versions I refer to use ALL CAPS instead of italics. Nietzsche loves his italics, especially in BGE. It's like he's screaming every other sentence.
  • Llallayue
This ebook is illegible. Someone just did an OCR scan of an existing translation, without fixing any of the problems. About once a sentence, two or more words are crammed together likethis.
  • Arlelond
This is the third book I've read of Nietzsche's. The first was a collection from various writings, and the second was "The Anti-Christ." Beyond Good and Evil was Nietzsche's attempt to summarize his entire philosophy into one book. I don't know if I'd ever call anything Nietzsche wrote a summary, but this book does lay out his principles in black-and-white, and it did help me put some of the pieces together.

Below are a few of my takeaways. It's not a summary, because I don't even know if that's possible. So I just wanted to share a few things I've picked up on.

On the will to power:

If modern (nineteenth century) man is no longer going to believe in God, or at least if they're going to tone down His influence a bit, the next logical step for them was the concept of free will. In a post-enlightenment world, people were trying to understand if there really is a God pulling our strings like puppets. If they weren't going to believe that, the next logical step was free will. Nietzsche rejects free will and instead believes in the will to power. Essentially the will to power is his phrase that means people should aim to take power over themselves and create a "superman" or "overman" out of themselves. Nietzsche sees this as an alternative to the concept of free will.

On religion -

Another thing that I noticed about Nietzsche after reading a fair bit of his work is that, as critical as he is of Christianity, he seems to have a bit of an affinity for Buddhism, or at least the principles of Buddhism. Buddhism's primary concept is "life is suffering," right? Nietzsche writes extensively about suffering as well, arguing in part that the cause of all great human advancement is suffering. In the Anti-Christ, he often points out that Buddhism is better than Christianity. To be fair, there was a pretty short list of things that weren't better than Christianity, according to Nietzsche.

There are a few epigrams I never want to forget from this book as well -

Blessed be the forgetful: for they forget their stupidities, too.

Whoever reaches his ideal transcends 'eo ipso.'*

"Where the tree of knowledge stands, there is always Paradise": thus speak the oldest and the youngest serpents.

*eo ipso = thereby
  • Shan
Great translation by Judith Norman! I much prefer it to the standard Walter Kaufmann translation.
  • Dibei
The written material in this book is acceptable but the book itself, that being the page is not upon opening the book I discovered this. The first three pages had the top right-hand corner are bent to an angle as to where they are not attached to the binding and thus make an indent into the cover of the book which ruins the pristine and beautiful image on the cover with a bulge that is clearly visible. I request a refund or at the very least new copy of this book that is free of misprints.
  • krot
Many can write more informed opinions on this book. I can merely say I have read it 7 times in the last two years and each time I gain a new insight into Nietzsche's thoughts about how humans can live joyful, productive lives in the face of constant reminders that the world and existence are unpredictable, cruel, often vicious and threatening, The ideas presented here are expanded in his later work.

He has a terrific sense of humor. I prefer Walter Kaufmann's translations.
  • MeGa_NunC
Terrible print job, Create Space. Margins are microscopic, spacing is awful, text is crammed in so tightly I need reading glasses. Buy any other copy.
Good words, bad publisher.
Nietzsche was brilliantly crazy or crazy brilliant, perhaps it was both. Not an obvious genius, but his wisdom is counter-intuitive and worthy of reflection. He was perhaps the most brilliant philosopher of his time, certainly not the most conventional--but arguably the most sagacious about many matters. It is a shame that he descended into madness. He is not to be read quickly, because in so doing you will miss the point. Worth reading and reflecting on, particularly if you study philosophy seriously.