Perspectivism Narrow and Wide: An Examination of Nietzsche's Limited Perspectivism from a Daoist Lens

Kritike 7 (1):1-21 (2013)
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Abstract

Western liberal intellectuals often find themselves in a precarious situation with regard to whether or not they should celebrate and endorse Friedrich Nietzsche as a philosopher who we should all unequivocally embrace into our Western philosophical canon. While his critique of the Western philosophical tradition and his own creative insights are unprecedented and immensely important, his blatant inegalitarianism and remarks against women are often too difficult to stomach. This paper attempts to introduce Western philosophers to Chuang Tzu, a Chinese thinker who shares much of Nietzsche’s style and philosophy, but also espouses a thoroughgoing egalitarianism. It does so by comparing Nietzsche and Chuang Tzu in regard to their methods, style, and philosophical beliefs, with a particular emphasis on the naturalism and perspectivism found in each thinker’s philosophy. The hope is to provide Western liberal-minded intellectuals interested in Nietzsche and in equality with another perspective to bolster their thinking.

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Casey Rentmeester
Bellin College

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