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Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900)
• Grandfather of postmodernism
• Genealogy as method
• On the Genealogy of Moralality
• First Essay: “Good and Evil, Good
• Purpose: to trace the genealogy
of modern morality
Small Group Questions
GROUP 1 (Sections 2-5)
• How did the nobility and the powerful define what was “good” and “bad”, according to Nietzsche? What
evidence does he use to support his argument? And do you find his evidence convincing?
GROUP 2 (Sections 6-8, 16)
• How did the notions of “good” and “bad” change when the priestly caste gained power, according to
Nietzsche? How did “priestly hate” become “Christian love”? And how do the Jews connect to Nietzsche’s
GROUP 3 (Sections 10-11)
• What is Nietzsche’s concept of ressentiment? How is “evil” conceived of through ressentiment and how does
this contrast with how the morality of the nobility defined “bad”? And is a morality based on ressentiment
completely negative for Nietzsche?
GROUP 4 (Section 13)
• What does Nietzsche mean by “’the doer’ is merely a fiction added to the deed – the deed is everything”?
How does he explain this idea through the story of the bird of prey and the lamb? And what does this mean
for our notions of individual human identity?