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Nietzsche's Artist of Self-Legislation: The Conflict Between Sovereignty and Traditional Morality

  • 인문논총
  • 2024, 64(), pp.187-211
  • DOI : 10.33638/JHS.64.8
  • Publisher : Institute for Human studies, Kyungnam University
  • Research Area : Humanities > Other Humanities
  • Received : December 31, 2023
  • Accepted : February 13, 2024
  • Published : June 30, 2024

Jung Heejoong 1

1경북대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This article delves into Nietzsche's exploration of the clash between the development of sovereign individuals and the conventional Christian notions of good and evil, with a primary focus on his work "On the Genealogy of Morality." It aims to elucidate the emergence of individuals as artists of self-legislation who transcend conventional moral frameworks. A sovereign individual, according to Nietzsche, possesses the capacity to forget healthily yet can bind themselves through memory and personal responsibility. Such individuals, characterized by self-dominance, act as self-legislators, creating their own moral codes rather than adhering to externally imposed ones. Nietzsche views conscience as a noble attribute attainable only through the arduous process of self-imposed suffering and the embrace of self-legislation, suggesting that it is not universally acquired. He contends that the Christian concept of good and evil represents a distortion of true values, with the clerical class reshaping them into notions of servitude. Central to Nietzsche's argument is the ongoing struggle between the immorality of the strong and the morality of the weak. This perpetual conflict, he argues, signifies the inherent tension within human nature. Embracing the adventure of self-legislation, Nietzsche proposes, is an affirmation of individual autonomy amidst the eternal recurrence of infinite possibilities—a provocative challenge that invites individuals to recognize themselves as godlike beings.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.

This paper was written with support from the National Research Foundation of Korea.