This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Nietzsche's Portraiture: Wagner As Worthy Opponent

3379 words - 14 pages

Nietzsche's Portraiture: Wagner as Worthy Opponent

ABSTRACT: Richard Wagner always represented for Nietzsche the Germany of that time. By examining Nietzsche's relationship to Wagner throughout his writings, one is also examining Nietzsche's relationship to his culture of birth. I focus on the writings from the late period in order to clarify Nietzsche's view of his own project regarding German culture. I show that Nietzsche created a portrait of Wagner in which the composer was a worthy opponent-someone with whom he disagreed but viewed as an equal. Wagner was such an opponent because he represented the disease of decadence which plagued the culture and from which Nietzsche suffered ...view middle of the document...

I show that in the late period Nietzsche created a portrait of Wagner in which the composer was a worthy opponent; meaning someone with whom Nietzsche disagreed but viewed as an equal. Nietzsche himself took on several worthy opponents, and he claimed that in his battle with "these objects of resistance" he learned about himself. Wagner was such an object of resistance because he represented the disease of decadence which plagued the culture and from which Nietzsche emphasized his overcoming. The goal of this portraiture was to demonstrate on an individual level what could be done on a cultural level to revitalize the culture and make it healthy. The paper is divided into 3 parts: in the first part I define decadence and Nietzsche's relationship to it, in the second part I state Nietzsche's four criteria for his worthy opponents, and in the final part, I sketch Nietzsche's portrait of Wagner in the late works; namely as a worthy opponent because the composer was the personification of decadence.

Nietzsche and Decadence

While Nietzsche used the term "decadence" throughout his published writings, in the late works he used it more frequently, and it took on the status of a technical term. Decadence, for Nietzsche, refers to the decay of values, which Nietzsche thought was inevitable because they are basically rationales for existence, and since there is no objective truth they can only be subjectively true-true only for certain people and certain times. When they are no longer true, they decay. Nietzsche claimed that decadence was the problem which "preoccupied [him] more profoundly" than any other because this inevitable decay of values was a threat to the culture, and by extension, the human species. (1) Values or rationales for existence are so important because in order to survive, let alone flourish, human beings require the creation of values. These values provide rationales for why we suffer and aid us in surviving and hopefully flourishing in spite of that suffering. (2) Without them, Nietzsche claimed that we would be in a condition of nihilism which would lead to mass suicide. Since Nietzsche placed value on a culture based on the type of great, flourishing individuals it produces, if its values are in decay, then it will be unable to produce these great individuals and it will be in decay. This then is the paradox of decadence: human beings have to create values, but any values that they will create will eventually decay.

Nietzsche contended that in post-Socratic western cultures, the proposed solutions to this "problem of decadence" had been unhealthy. In general, they had created values whose goal was to protect the weakest type of human beings from the inherent meaninglessness of life by claiming that there was objective truth, and instead of helping the culture to flourish, it had led to what Nietzsche saw as an encroaching nihilism as this objective truth had begun to outlive its usefulness ( e.g. "God is dead"). In short,...

Other Essays Like Nietzsche's Portraiture: Wagner as Worthy Opponent

The Role of English Language Essay

1346 words - 6 pages Madras as well as the students all over India, are you receiving an education which will make you worthy to realize that ideal and which will draw the best out of you, or is it an education which has become a factory for making Government employees or clerks in commercial offices ? Is the goal of the education that you are receiving that of mere employment whether in the Government departments or other departments ? If that be the goal of your

Marketing Case Study - Blitzmegaplex vs 21cineplex

1463 words - 6 pages . First of all, let’s talk about what BlitzMegaplex has done so far to compete with 21Cineplex. As the new market challenger in the industry, BlitzMegaplex had to define its strategic objective and opponents. It is clear that their opponent is the long-time market leader 21Cineplex and their objective is to attack them. Of course it was not easy to break through the industry. Therefore, BlitzMegaplex has implemented several general attack

Bernard Madoff Scandal

3087 words - 13 pages Accounting Fraud Examination By: Wagner October 12, 2011 Introduction As we look back on the first decade of the 21st Century, we see that Corporate America and the Financial Markets were riddled with corruption and fraud. At the beginning of the decade we saw the likes of Enron and WorldCom become insolvent due to accounting frauds of epic proportions. The one case that stands out amongst all of them is the Bernard Madoff case

Tulasi Dasa's

3944 words - 16 pages Dear Bhakti-vaidurya Madhava Maharaja, Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Sri Sri Guru and Gauranga. I have received your letter dated June 21, 1996. Because I am presently on tour, I was delayed in responding to your letter. Please forgive me for this. I have read your letter, and in this regard I want to say that you should not take My response as that of an opponent, but rather as that of a friend. For about fifty-five

Coun 510 Treatment Plan

3225 words - 13 pages , anxieties, and motives.It is concerned with more deeply comprehending and alleviating as much as possible pervasive postmodern symptoms such as excessive anxiety, apathy, alienation, avoidance, shame despair, depression, guilt, anger, life-enhancing experiences of relationship, love, caring, commitment, courage, individuation, self-actualization, authenticity, acceptance, and transcendence.This case study is about Angela a 25 year old woman that is

Social Science

2782 words - 12 pages miserable situations like old age. The married guys in the survey, who said that life in college without marriage is good, also didn’t prefer to live unmarried for their whole life, because even if the unmarried life is better than married, it’s not as worthy as marital life. Therefore, a man should get married, because marriage brings more valuable merits, like the experience of being a father, a hand of good life mate, etc. After a man enters

Fractured Fairy Tale Sample

5295 words - 22 pages the last thing my “prince” had asked of me during our spinning days. This evil being would want a replacement. Could I offer him a child? Could I offer him my child? I thought back to when my brother was little. Could I offer an innocent child to THIS thing? I sighed. “No.” He seemed delighted by my response. “Good. I think we’ve finally found a worthy opponent. I accept your challenge.” Huh?! I stood perplexed, waiting for

The Separation Of Capital Ownership And Control

1577 words - 7 pages The argument of whether the separation of capital ownership and control is an efficient form of organization has constantly been a controversial issue. The criticism whether the controllers’ act is in the best interest of the owners’ wills never end as long as hired managers operate management. As the number of public companies has been increasing over the course of this century, meanwhile the American style of contact based corporation has

The Versatility And Flexibility Of OLED's

1014 words - 5 pages kind. The new sensor holds promise for myriad potential applications, such as monitoring oxygen, inorganic gases, volatile organic compounds, biochemical compounds, and biological organisms.”(Johnston). Ames Laboratory has been a driving force in OLED research and finally produced an effective model. Generally, OLEDs have a layer of organic materials placed between an anode and cathode, all deposited on a substrate. In the organic layer there

Comparing The Moral Virtues Of Antony And Julian The Apostate

1103 words - 5 pages . Regardless of the fact that Julian and Anthony did not practice the same religion, they both shared a particular devotion to their beliefs. From a very young age, Antony was exceptionally religious. As a child, he delighted in going to church to be closer to God unlike other children that would prefer playing outside. The entirety of his life was devoted to God’s word. God told him to sell all of his possessions and move away from home

Living In A Cashless Society

1637 words - 7 pages Money in a traditional sense no longer exists. Money is becoming much of a concept than a physical material, and most ordinary bitter have not see the reality of the switch. People today are using credit and debit cards on a regular basis and in everyday situations such as meal purchased at fast food, highway tolls, clothing, groceries, gas stations, etc. all of these means of systems could be regarded as a cashless society or world. The

Related Papers

Friedrich Nietzsche Essay

1067 words - 5 pages “with maturity he lost his heavenly father”(Bentley, p.86). In 1868 Nietzsche was a student in Leipzig. This is when he met Cosima and Richard Wagner. The latter was a world-renowned musical artist. Both of these individuals were crucial to Nietzsche's development as a philosopher.      Theognis was a poet of the sixth century B.C. This man supplied Nietzsche with the idea that an aristocracy “should be scientifically bred

The Dead Of God In The Modern Society

2511 words - 11 pages ". Western Civilization and its culture are to blame according to Nietzsche. The "Advent of Nihilism" is also to blame for the death of God. Nietzsche believes there is no objective order or structure in the world except what we give it. Nietzsche's argument is that with the "advent of nihilism", man began to change his beliefs and faith in an all knowing, all powerful creator and instead, needs no master. The definition of nihilism could be taken as

Applied Research Technologies Essay

5084 words - 21 pages confronted the unit’s twin organizational problems of low morale and growing turnover, and in his first year, rebuilt the team by carefully selecting entrepreneurial-minded individuals to fill the vacancies left by turnover in the unit. One of his key recruits was Janice Wagner, whom he knew from her five years as a marketing manager in the HVAC Division. She was excited to join a unit that had an opportunity to develop a new business from scratch

Terror And Repression In Nazi Germany

1521 words - 7 pages the Jazz genre. Instead composes such as Wagner spread messages of nationalist goals and heroic themes. The success of propaganda is difficult to judge. There are many indicative signs that demonstrate that propaganda did have an important role in creating popular support for Nazi decisions and actions. Even that propaganda was in fact highly effective in indoctrinating Nazi ideals, but only because it was backed up by a powerful and totalitarian government that brought back Germany’s economic and military strength. “The final ‘goal’ could only be reached by blindly following Fuhrer”.