Nietzsche on art slides


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From a talk at the Barnes Philosophy Club.

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  •  The Gay Science (Section 125, The Madman)Also in Thus Spoke Zarathustra.
  • Apollo is a many-talented Greek god of prophecy, music, intellectual pursuits, healing, plague, and sometimes, the sun. (mother is Leto)Writers often contrast the cerebral, beardless young Apollo with his half-brother, the hedonistic Dionysus, god of wine, drunken revelry, agricultural fertility, libido and gratification. (mother is Semele)
  • “Noble, wise man...fated to error and misery...who through his extraordinary sufferings exerts a magical, healing effect on all around him, even after his death”
  • Prometheus Unbound, Heracles frees Prometheus from his chains and kills the eagle that had been sent daily to eat the Titan's perpetually regenerating liver
  • Paul Rée, the “psychologist”
  • Six trombones off stage, playing a liturgical motif: express the aspiration towards a Christian, ascetic love.To embed:<object width="560" height="315"><param name="movie" value="//"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="//" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="560" height="315" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true"></embed></object>
  • Temple of Hephaestus - fierce resistance to Dionysus:Doric art – the final state, associated with Sparta, seems to contradict.I can explain the Doric state and Doric art only as a constant Apollonian war camp: onlythrough an uninterrupted opposition to the Titanic-barbaric essence of the Dionysian could such adefiantly aloof art, protected on all sides with fortifications, such a harsh upbringing as a preparationfor war, and such a cruel and ruthless basis for government endure for a long time.1
  • N: “cries of hatred...drunken outbursts of desire”Art is his copy of the Primal Unity and its painθυμέ, θύμ᾽ ἀμηχάνοισι κήδεσιν κυκώμενε,ἄνα δέ, δυσμενέων δ᾽ ἀλέξευ προσβαλὼν ἐναντίονστέρνον, ἐν δοκοῖσιν ἐχθρῶν πλησίον κατασταθείςἀσφαλέως· καὶ μήτε νικῶν ἀμφαδὴν ἀγάλλεομηδὲ νικηθεὶς ἐν οἴκωι καταπεσὼν ὀδύρεο.ἀλλὰ χαρτοῖσίν τε χαῖρε καὶ κακοῖσιν ἀσχάλαμὴ λίην· γίνωσκε δ᾽ οἷος ῥυσμὸς ἀνθρώπους ἔχει.[44]
  • Nietzsche on art slides

    1. 1. Nietzsche on art and life Nick Aldridge
    2. 2. Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1844-1900) Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche was a German philologist, philosopher, cultural critic, poet and composer.
    3. 3. Nietzsche and Schopenhauer Schopenhauer Nietzsche Is life worth living? No: underlying will = brutal suffering Ditto. Can we overcome the will/truth? Truth comes first: the will cannot be overcome. Maybe we can overcome truth through artistic illusion Tone of response Vengeful relish Despair and fighting What about identifying with the “will”? Must reject will as evil, but find solace in altruism, asceticism. Yes: can re-energise and deepen human experience.
    4. 4. God is dead “God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him. How shall we comfort ourselves, the murderers of all murderers? …What festivals of atonement, what sacred games shall we have to invent? Is not the greatness of this deed too great for us? Must we ourselves not become gods simply to appear worthy of it?”
    5. 5. Apollo and Dionysus
    6. 6. Apollo and Dionysus Apollonian Dionysian Why this God? Light, fantasy, calm, beauty (Awkwardly also of music) Chaos and intoxication: a chorus of drunken revelers. Art forms Sculpture, also poetry Music, singing, dancing, Experience- metaphor Dreams (Philosopher can see life as a dream. Dreams have meaning.) Drunkenness, (With revelry, sexual licentiousness) Content Beautiful forms, structure (representation) Intoxicated visions of Primordial Unity (the will) Emotion evoked Reassuring: comforting veil. Image of self as opposed to world and others. Ecstasy and terror, awe. Self- forgetting & reconciliation with nature & others. Mystic oneness. Truthfulness No – a veil of maya (appearance), like a fragile boat on stormy seas Yes – veil of maya torn to tatters.”Drunken reality”
    7. 7. Oedipus Rex • Oedipus is cast out of Thebes as a baby. • Unwittingly kills father (in a skirmish) and returns to marry the Queen, his mother. • When they find out, she hangs herself and he blinds himself.
    8. 8. Prometheus • Prometheus , a Titan, brought fire down from heaven to human beings. • Zeus punished him by chaining him on a mountain and sending a vulture to feed on his liver during the day.
    9. 9. Transfiguration, Raphael Apollo: Visionary world of appearances: radiant floating in pure bliss, serene contemplation. Redeeming Vision Dionysis: Possessed boy, despairing bearers, terrified disciples: primal and eternal pain Necessary Suffering
    10. 10. Menander’s comedies Same tone as modern romantic comedies, in which love is nearly thwarted by grouchy parent Stock characters: • Cooks with familiar jokes • “Angry old man", the domineering parent • Bragging soldier • Wise slave • The kind shrewd prostitute
    11. 11. Wagner and rebirth of tragedy “the Meistersingers will acquaint men, even in the remotest ages to come, with the nature of Germany’s soul... It’s very ripest fruit” Wagner at Bayreuth
    12. 12. Saying “yes” to life: "to the poet, to the philosopher, to the saint, all things are friendly and sacred, all events profitable, all days holy, all men divine" Ralph Waldo Emerson, History, 1841
    13. 13. Nietzsche with two friends Lou Salomé Paul Rée Nietzsche
    14. 14. Falling out with Wagner •“Denial, Christianity, medievalism” •Embraced the “ascetic ideal...using Schopenhauer as his front man”
    15. 15. A dialogue of self and soul, W.B. Yeats "I am content to live it all again, And yet again… I am content to follow to its source Every event in action or in thought, Measure the lot, forgive myself the lot! When such as I cast out remorse So great a sweetness flows into the breast We must laugh and we must sing, We are blessed by everything, Everything we look upon is blessed."
    16. 16. Doric Temple (Athens)
    17. 17. Oedipus at Colonus • Death of exiled Oedipus in Athens, while sons are at war over Thebes, and daughters weep • “the lightless depths of Earth bursting open in kindness to receive him” (1886–1887). • “The sound of reconciliation from another world echoes most purely perhaps in Oedipus at Colonus.”
    18. 18. emotions in Archilochus Soul, my soul, don't let them break you, all these troubles. Never yield: though their force is overwhelming, up! attack them shield to shield... Take the joy and bear the sorrow, looking past your hopes and fears: learn to recognize the measured dance that orders all our years.