The Place of the Person in Social Life (Cultural Heritage by Paul Peachey, John Kromkowski, George F. McLean

By Paul Peachey, John Kromkowski, George F. McLean

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The paradox is resolved, it seems, by simply recognizing the limited domain of creative work, while allowing for the underlying fatalism which entails only that one’s possibilities are circumscribed. A place for ‘self-creation’ is found precisely in the conceptual space between causal essentialism (the heart of Nietzsche’s fatalism) and classical determinism. Unfortunately, this seemingly attractive solution to the paradox simply does not square with the theory of action that underlies the basic fatalistic doctrine.

BGE 19; GM II. 2; TI, ‘Skirmishes o f an Untimely Man’, 38. 185 D 109. This passage, I hasten to add, is not atypical. For one thing, it squares with the theory o f action already defended and documented above. But similar claims also appear in BGE 117 (‘The will to overcome an affect is ultimately only the will o f another, or o f several, other affects’) and underlie the extended discussion in GM III. 17. Note, too, that it comes from the very same work from which the earlier, seemingly anti-fatalist, passages also come.

318 B R I A N LEITER Condition is satisfied: there must be, in ordinary parlance, an autonomous self that does the mastering and does the creating. Someone who, for example, masters his burning desire for alcohol through a medication that moderates his desire for alcohol has not, it seems, engaged in ‘self-mastery’: the drive has been mastered, to be sure, but it is not an autonomous self that did the mastering, but rather the drug. Section 109 of Daybreak begins by canvassing six ways of ‘combating the vehemence of a drive [or urge] (eines Triebes)’.

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