John Richardson

in Nietzsche's System

Published in print June 1996 | ISBN: 9780195098464
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199833597 | DOI:

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This chapter develops the core idea that “the world is will to power” – what I call Nietzsche's “power ontology.” I give careful analyses of “will” and “power,” and clarify how he thinks these are things’ essence or being. I distinguish between two basic forms that will to power can take – the active and the reactive – which will lie at the root of his values. The chapter then shows how this notion of will to power grounds Nietzsche's conception of persons as systems or syntheses of such wills (or drives), as well as his distinction of three basic types of persons – master, slave, and overman – each clarified as a specific way such a system of drives can be organized.

Keywords: active will to power; being; master; Nietzsche; overman; power ontology; reactive will to power; slave; will to power

Chapter.  29698 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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