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by Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen


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In American Nietzsche, Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen delves deeply into Nietzsche’s philosophy, and America’s reception of it, to tell the story of his curious appeal

In American Nietzsche, Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen delves deeply into Nietzsche’s philosophy, and America’s reception of it, to tell the story of his curious appeal.

American Nietzsche: A History of an Icon and His Ideas is a 2011 book about the reception of Friedrich Nietzsche in the United States by Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen. It won the American Historical Association's John H. Dunning Prize (2013), Society for . Intellectual History Annual Book Award (2013), and Morris D. Forkosch Prize for the Best First Book in Intellectual History (2013).

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Personal Name: Ratner-Rosenhagen, Jennifer

Personal Name: Ratner-Rosenhagen, Jennifer. Publication, Distribution, et. Chicago ; London The making of the American Nietzsche The soul of man under modernity The American naturalization of the U?bermensch Nietzsche as educator Devotions: The Letters Dionysian enlightenment Antifoundationalism on native grounds Nietzsche is us. Personal Name: Nietzsche, Friedrich Wilhelm, 1844-1900.

American Nietzsche: A Hi. .has been added to your Cart. The scholarship and learning of this book are prodigious as Ratner-Rosenhagen discusses the engagement of many important American thinkers with Nietzsche. I was pleased with her detailed discussion of the American idealist philosopher Josiah Royce and his understanding of Nietzsche's importance. Most of the thinkers she discusses, however, are not in the idealist category. They include, among the early pragmatists, William James, John Dewey.

21 Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen, American Nietzsche: A History of.140 This idea can be expanded to having children bring in family photos for. No School.

21 Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen, American Nietzsche: A History of an Icon and His Ideas (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2012), 136. 22 Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche et a. The Gay Science (Cambridge, . 26 Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen, American Nietzsche: A History of an Icon and His Ideas (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2012), 134. 27 George Santayana, The German Mind: A Philosophical Diagnosis.

In American Nietzsche, Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen delves deeply into Nietzsche's philosophy, and America's reception of it, to tell the story of his curious appeal

In American Nietzsche, Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen delves deeply into Nietzsche's philosophy, and America's reception of it, to tell the story of his curious appeal.

Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen. Ratner-Rosenhagen dedicates her book to unearthing the rich and forgotten American archives of Nietzsche’s cultural receptions that paralleled his metaphysical treatments on the other side of the Atlantic

Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen. A History of an Icon and His Ideas Chicago: U of Chicago P, 2012. Nietzsche’s corpus offered European philosophers a conceptual playground. Ratner-Rosenhagen dedicates her book to unearthing the rich and forgotten American archives of Nietzsche’s cultural receptions that paralleled his metaphysical treatments on the other side of the Atlantic. She demonstrates how Nietzsche remained a fixture throughout the long American twentieth century by tracing his receptions across literary, religious, political, as well as philosophical realms. American Nietzsche is a reception history.

If you were looking for a philosopher likely to appeal to Americans, Friedrich Nietzsche would be far from your first choice. After all, in his blazing career, Nietzsche took aim at nearly all the foundations of modern American life: Christian morality, the Enlightenment faith in reason, and the idea of human equality. Despite that, for more than a century Nietzsche has been a hugely popular—and surprisingly influential—figure in American thought and culture. In American Nietzsche, Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen delves deeply into Nietzsche's philosophy, and America’s reception of it, to tell the story of his curious appeal. Beginning her account with Ralph Waldo Emerson, whom the seventeen-year-old Nietzsche read fervently, she shows how Nietzsche’s ideas first burst on American shores at the turn of the twentieth century, and how they continued  alternately to invigorate and to shock Americans for the century to come. She also delineates the broader intellectual and cultural contexts within which a wide array of commentators—academic and armchair philosophers, theologians and atheists, romantic poets and hard-nosed empiricists, and political ideologues and apostates from the Left and the Right—drew insight and inspiration from Nietzsche’s claims for the death of God, his challenge to universal truth, and his insistence on the interpretive nature of all human thought and beliefs. At the same time, she explores how his image as an iconoclastic immoralist was put to work in American popular culture, making Nietzsche an unlikely posthumous celebrity capable of inspiring both teenagers and scholars alike. A  penetrating examination of a powerful but little-explored undercurrent of twentieth-century American thought and culture, American Nietzsche dramatically recasts our understanding of American intellectual life—and puts Nietzsche squarely at its heart.


Comments: (7)

Anarus
Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen's book, "American Nietzsche: A History of an Icon and his Ideas" (2011) examines the reception of the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche (1844 - 1900) in the United States and Americans' ongoing and continuted fascination with his writings and character. Ratner-Rosenhagen, the Merle Curti Associate Professor of History at the University of Wisconsin -- Madison, also discusses the influence of American thought on Nietzsche. In particular the book comes full circle by beginning and ending with the thought of Ralph Waldo Emerson. As a student, Nietzsche became enamored with Emerson, read his works assiduously for many years, and made extensive marginal notes on his books, which he read in German translation. Scholars over the years have recognized Emerson's influence on Nietzsche, but Ratner-Rosenhagen explores their similarities in detail. The study also ends with Nietsche and Emerson, as Ratner-Rosenhagen discusses their related conception of philosophy and its purpose. Both thinkers see philosophy as non-foundational and without absolutes or certainties. Both Emerson and Nietzsche tend to deny that philosophy is a study with a separate subject matter or "fach". Rather it is a search to find meaning in a world of risk, uncertainty, and lack of transcendental mooring. For Ratner-Rosenhagen and for the subjects of her study, philosophy is meant to be a provocation to thought rather than a doctrine.

The scholarship and learning of this book are prodigious as Ratner-Rosenhagen discusses the engagement of many important American thinkers with Nietzsche. I was pleased with her detailed discussion of the American idealist philosopher Josiah Royce and his understanding of Nietzsche's importance. Most of the thinkers she discusses, however, are not in the idealist category. They include, among the early pragmatists, William James, John Dewey. Mid-twentieth century thinkers include Walter Kaufmann whose translations of Nietzsche and particular understanding of this thinker made Nietzsche available to a generation of readers. Ratner-Rosenhagen studies how French deconstructionists and their American followers read Nietzsche in a manner highly different from Kaufmann's synthesis. She also considers later thinkers including Alan Bloom, the influential literary critic Harold Bloom, together with Richard Rorty and Stanley Cavell.

Ratner-Rosenhagen shows that Nietzsche's influence extended far beyond these major American intellectual figures and into what is often described as "middle-brow" or "low-brow" American culture. She offers substantial discussion of how Protestant and Catholic clergy engaged with Nietzsche, both to find what they found valuable in his thought and what they tried to reject. She discusses the iconoclastic H.L. Menken and his extended writings on Nietzsche. There are considerations of early doctoral dissertations in the United States and of considerations of his philosophy by thinkers who have been largely forgotten. And interestingly, a chapter of the book deals with "fan letters" that American readers of Nietzsche sent to the Nietzsche Archives which was under the control of the philosopher's sister, Elizabeth Forster Nietszche. The book is heavily documented with lengthy substantive endnotes which are important to the text.

As with most great philosophers, Nietzsche's thought is difficult. His beautiful literary style and his aphoristic writing if anything complicate understanding. In addition, Ratner-Rosenhagen explores Nietzsche's American reception in the context of thinkers who are themselves difficult. The reader must both engage with Nietzsche and with American 20th Century intellectual history in reading this book. Ratner-Rosenhagen's exposition of some of the thinkers she discusses, particularly the deconstructionists, is not as helpful as it might be to the uninitiated reader. The book demands slow, thoughtful consideration.

Readers coming to this book will probably have a familiarity and a strong passion for Nietzsche. Ratner-Rosenhagen understandably avoids the temptation to present a full exposition of his thought. Her book explores what American readers have made of him. She discusses key aspects of Nietzsche, including his anti-foundationalism (perspectivism), his famous claim that "God is dead", his emphasis on interpretation, and the role of the "overman" in his thought. There are interpretive questions, addressed by different readers, about whether Nietzsche is a "political" or a "personal" thinker and about what Americans of varied political persuasions have found worthwhile in this markedly undemocratic philosopher. The approach of the book tends to be historicist. Ratner-Rosenhagen tries to show how different American interpretations of Nietzsche surfaced in response to changes in American culture.

The book begins with a brief consideration of Nietszsche himself and of Emerson's influence. The book proceeds largely chronologically with Nietzsche's early American reception and the first translations of his books. Subsequent early chapters discuss religious responses to Nietzsche, the struggle of American thinkers to understand the "ubermensch" and Nietszsche's role as an educator. Following an "interlude" in which Ratner-Rosenhagen examines the reaction to Nietzsche by many ordinary Americans, the book resumes with Walter Kaufmann, existentialism, and then late 20th Century readings of Nietzsche, returning at the end to the American philosopher, Emerson.

The most recurring philosophical idea in this book is anti-foundationalism, a position the author appears to share enthusiastically with Nietzsche and Emerson. There remains strong philosophical thinking in the United States that cannot be characterized as "anti-foundational" including, the thought of Royce and Alan Bloom, among the thinkers she discusses, as well as many others of varying persuasions. Perhaps the author takes anti-foundationalism too much for granted.

This book is an extraordinary study. It reawakened me to think again about Nietzsche in the company of the American pragmatists I have been reading for some years. The book will be of great value to readers with a serious interest in Nietzsche, American culture, American thought, and the play of the mind.

Robin Friedman
Mildorah
While Friedrich Nietzsche has had a significant impact on my own life, I can honestly say that I had very little idea, until I read this book, just how great an impact he has had on the lives of so many others. Ratner-Rosenhagen does an excellent job of covering the history of Nietzsche's engagement with American thinkers, from Emerson's impact on Nietzsche through to Nietzsche's impact on modern American thinkers. I think the most fascinating part of the book is the "Interlude" in which she discusses some of the letters she discovered at the Nietzsche Archive written by American admirers to his sister, who took over the estate after Nietzsche's mental collapse and death. The only complaint I can leverage is that I don't think Ratner-Rosenhagen cast her net quite wide enough. While she does a very good job of covering certain figures whom Nietzsche has clearly had an impact upon, I would have liked to have seen a fuller treatment that included a greater diversity even if this necessitated that less detail be paid to each individual. I recommend this book for anyone with either than interest in American intellectual history and/or a love for Nietzsche; happily, I have both, which made this book a real treat.
Nea
A gem that captures the influence of genius on an impressionable society. This work foments the speculation to be found in such modern works as God Bless The Dead, to its great credit. Deeply authoritative and readable, this work will serve as a guidepost for those interested in how concept molds culture, to the great benefit of both. Highly recommended.
Kazigrel
American Nietzsche is neither a biography nor a formal analysis of philosophical concepts. Professor Ratner-Rosenhagen is a historian, and the subject of her book is presented through the lens of her discipline. It is, in short, an insightful and skillfully written treatment of the influence of Friedrich Nietzsche's ideas and image on American culture. Refreshingly, I detected no axes being ground, no hidden agendas skulking in the shadows. The author has simply identified an important story that needed to be told, and has done so in a thorough, well-organized, and interesting manner. Whatever your level of familiarity with Nietzsche the person or his work, or your opinions about either, if you have an interest in the events, ideas, and people that shaped 20th century American culture then you will very likely find this book engaging.
Goodman
Provocative and critical view of how we come to see how little we think about what we believe we know.. A must for modern thinkers. I am reminded of a quote form Peter Abelard, "By doubting we are led to inquire and by inquiry we perceive the truth."
Netlandinhabitant
Received promptly. Very pleased.
Dorilune
When I read it I felt like Nietzsche had been reading my mind. The auther did an excellent job in explaining Ralph Waldo Emerson's writings influence on Nietzsche and how Nietsche's writings influenced American thought. Nietzsche wrote in the 1880's that "God is dead" to describe religion's God as irrelevent to modern thought. (an idea I thought we had discovered in the 1960's)
American Nietzsche: A History of an Icon and His Ideas download epub
Americas
Author: Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen
ISBN: 022600676X
Category: History
Subcategory: Americas
Language: English
Publisher: University of Chicago Press; Reprint edition (October 15, 2012)
Pages: 464 pages