The Poetry of Friedrich Nietzsche

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9780195036770: The Poetry of Friedrich Nietzsche
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Nietzsche has long been recognized and acclaimed as a thinker who transcends disciplinary categories. Although much has been written of him as a forerunner of existentialism, Freudian psychology, and modern linguistics, no modern study had been devoted to one of his lifelong preoccupations: his poetry. This book--the first to bring together the poems in English--restores them to their proper central position in the Nietzsche canon. Begun in early youth and composed and revised until the onset of his insanity in 1899, the poems reflect his own imperative that "the philosopher should recognize that which is necessary and the artist should create it."

In The Poetry of Friedrich Nietzsche Grundlehner examines 30 major poems and in so doing draws allusions and references to 220 juvenilia, songs, epigrams, dithyrambs, and verse fragments found throughout Nietzsche's writing. Arranged chronologically according to the various stages of Nietzsche's life and philosophical development, these not only bear testimony to the many changes in his environment and thinking, but from a rich background to his prose writings.

Excerpt:

"Toward New Seas" (1882)

Toward that place--is my will. And I trust
Henceforth myself and my grip.
Open lies the sea, my
Genose ship heads into the blue.

Everything is shining new and newer for me.

Noon sleeps upon space and time--:
Only your eye--monstrously,
Stare at me, Infinity!

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About the Author:

Philip Grundlehner, Assistant Professor of German, The Johns Hopkins University.

Review:

"Grundlehner has met the challenge of grounding Nietzsche's poetry within the philosophy, as an indispensable, truly organic feature of the philosopher's work....[The book] will indeed enhance our study of the man, and one cannot help but express gratitude to Philip Grundlehner for having
finally rounded out the picture."--The German Quarterly

"Philip Grundlehner's book has filled a gap in the scholarship on Nietzsche. He has provided the best introduction to Nietzsche's poetry there is in any language. His work shows a deep understanding of the importance of poetry in Nietzsche's self-image, and also reveals a deep grasp of the
problems inherent in grappling with lyric poetry. This volume will have a significant impact on our reading of Nietzsche."--Sander L. Gilman, Cornell University

"Frequent excellent summaries reinforce the reader's sense of being guided by a critic both learned and sensitive....Contains all the necessary documentation and provocation for readers to being their own quest for these poems....The overall presentation of Nietzsche's lifelong struggle with
language, as his compromised creative vehicle, is impressively sophisticated."--Journal of English and Germanic Philology

"Philip Grundlehner's book has filled a gap in the scholarship on Nietzsche. He has provided the best introduction to Nietzsche's poetry there is in any language. His work shows a deep understanding of the importance of poetry in Nietzsche's self-image, and also reveals a deep grasp of the
problems inherent in grappling with lyric poetry. This volume will have a significant impact on our reading of Nietzsche."--Sander L. Gilman, Cornell University.

"A truly brilliant and much-needed book....Grundlehner provides a clear perspective on Nietzsche's poetry as an early and influential manifestation of literary modernism. In such superb translations the poems alone will be sufficient reward for any reader."--The Christian Century

"Grundlehner's book is well documented, gives a good account of secondary material (exposing areas of contradiction and inadequacy in Nietzsche scholarship) and provides valid insights regarding the nature of Nietzsche's poetry and its relationship to his philosophy. Grundlehner's work is
excellent in illuminating that interplay of enthusiasm and scepticism that permeates Nietzsche's poetry as well as his prose."--Studies in Romanticism

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