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Donovan Miyasaki
Wright State University
  1. Can Nietzsche's Noble Be Moral and Just?Donovan Miyasaki - manuscript
    Nietzsche implicitly endorses a positive value system grounded in his concept of the will to power, a “noble” alternative to the “slavish” and life-denying values that he believes characterize modern European morality. His own power-affirming value system is usually presented amorally: as an alternative to morality, rather than as a competing morality. Most commentators believe this is necessarily so: because Nietzsche founds his values in the affirmation of power, they are incompatible with the concern for the well-being of others that (...)
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  2. A Nietzschean Case for Illiberal Egalitarianism.Donovan Miyasaki - 2014 - In Barry Stocker & Manuel Knoll (eds.), Nietzsche as Political Philosopher. De Gruyter. pp. 155-170.
    This paper draws on Friedrich Nietzsche’s work to defend the (admittedly non-Nietzschean) conclusion that a non-liberal egalitarian society is superior in two ways: first, as a moral ideal, it does not rest on questionable claims about essential human equality and, second, such a society would provide the optimal psychological and political conditions for individual wellbeing, social stability, and cultural achievement. I first explain Nietzsche’s distinction between forms of egalitarianism: noble and slavish. The slavish form promotes equality, defined negatively as the (...)
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  3. Nietzsche's Naturalist Morality of Breeding: A Critique of Eugenics as Taming.Donovan Miyasaki - 2014 - In Vanessa Lemm (ed.), Nietzsche and the Becoming of Life. Fordham University Press. pp. 194-213.
    In this paper, I directly oppose Nietzsche ’s endorsement of a morality of breeding to all forms of comparative, positive eugenics: the use of genetic selection to introduce positive improvement in individuals or the species, based on negatively or comparatively defined traits. I begin by explaining Nietzsche ’s contrast between two broad categories of morality: breeding and taming. I argue that the ethical dangers of positive eugenics are grounded in their status as forms of taming, which preserves positively evaluated character (...)
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  4. Nietzsche Contra Freud on Bad Conscience.Donovan Miyasaki - 2010 - Nietzsche-Studien 39 (1):434-454.
    While much has been made of the similarities between the work of Nietzsche and Freud, insufficient attention has been paid to their differences. Even where they have been noted, the degree of these differences, which sometimes approaches direct opposition, has often been underestimated. In the following essay, I will suggest that on the topic of conscience Nietzsche and Freud have radically opposed views, with profoundly different moral consequences. Despite superficial similarities, Nietzsche’s conception of conscience is opposed to that of Freud (...)
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  5.  50
    Feeling, Not Freedom: Nietzsche Against Agency.Donovan Miyasaki - 2016 - Journal of Nietzsche Studies 47 (2):256-274.
    Despite his rejection of the metaphysical conception of freedom of the will, Nietzsche frequently makes positive use of the language of freedom, autonomy, self-mastery, self-overcoming, and creativity when describing his normative project of enhancing humanity through the promotion of its highest types. A number of interpreters have been misled by such language to conclude that Nietzsche accepts some version of compatibilism, holding a theory of natural causality that excludes metaphysical or “libertarian” freedom of the will, while endorsing morally substantial alternative (...)
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  6.  71
    A Ground for Ethics in Heidegger's Being and Time.Donovan Miyasaki - 2007 - Journal of the British Society for Phenomenology 38 (3):261-79.
    In this essay I suggest that Heidegger’s Being and Time provides a ground for ethics in the notion of Dasein’s ‘Being-guilty.’ Being-guilty is not a ground for ethics in the sense of a demonstration of the moral ‘ought’ or a refutation of moral skepticism. Rather, Being-guilty serves as a foundation for ethical life in a way uniquely suited to a phenomenological form of ethics, a way that clarifies, from a phenomenological point of view, why the traditional approach to ethics is (...)
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  7.  54
    The Equivocal Use of Power in Nietzsche’s Failed Anti-Egalitarianism.Donovan Miyasaki - 2015 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 12 (1):1-32.
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  8. Nietzsche's Will to Power as Naturalist Critical Ontology.Donovan Miyasaki - 2013 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 30 (3):251-69.
    In this paper, I argue that Nietzsche’s published works contain a substantial, although implicit, argument for the will to power as ontology—a critical and descriptive, rather than positive and explanatory, theory of reality. Further, I suggest this ontology is entirely consistent with a naturalist methodology. The will to power ontology follows directly from Nietzsche’s naturalist rejection of three metaphysical presuppositions: substance, efficient causality, and final causality. I show that a number of interpretations, including those of Clark, Schacht, Reginster, and Richardson, (...)
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  9. Nietzsche's Answer to the Naturalistic Fallacy: Life as Condition, Not Criterion, of Morality.Donovan Miyasaki - manuscript
    Nietzsche’s late writings present a value opposition of health and decadence based in his conception of organic life. While this appears to be a moral ideal that risks the naturalistic fallacy of directly deriving norms from facts, it instead describes a meta-ethical ideal: the necessary conditions for any kind of moral agency. Nietzsche’s ideal of health not only evades but also dissolves the naturalistic fallacy by suggesting that the specific content of morality is irrelevant. If health is measured by power (...)
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  10.  4
    Political Violence as Bad Faith in Beauvoir's The Blood of Others - English Version.Donovan Miyasaki - 2008 - In Julia Kristeva (ed.), (Re) découvrir l’œuvre de Simone de Beauvoir – Du Deuxième Sexe à La Cérémonie des adieux. Lormont, France: pp. 367-73.
    The Blood of Others begins at the bedside of a mortally wounded Résistance fighter named Hélène Bertrand. We encounter her from the point of view of Jean Blomart, her friend and lover, who recounts the story of their relationship : their first meeting, unhappy romance, bitter breakup, and eventual reunion as fellow fighters for the liberation of occupied France. The novel invites the reader to interpret Hélène and Jean’s story as one of positive ethical development. On this progressive reading, although (...)
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  11. Morality and Art: The Case of Huck Finn (Mark Twain's The'Adventures of Huckleberry Finn').Donovan Miyasaki - 2007 - Philosophy and Literature 31 (1):125-132.
    In the following essay, I argue that in the case of some works of art, moral evaluation should not play a role in artistic appraisal. While I reject the strong ethicist’s view—the view that moral evaluation may inform the artistic evaluation of any artwork—I will not do so in favor of the aestheticist’s position. The aestheticist argues for a rigid distinction between the moral and aesthetic evaluation of an artwork. On this view, the moral status of the work is independent (...)
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  12. Nietzsche and the Morality of Liberal Eugenics.Donovan Miyasaki - manuscript
    Ethical debates about liberal eugenics frequently focus on the supposed unnaturalness of its means and its supposed harm to autonomy, an emphasis that leads into irresolvable disputes about human nature, free will, and identity. In this paper I draw on Nietzsche’s work to critique eugenics’ ends rather than its means, as harm to abilities, rather than to autonomy. I first critique subjective eugenics, the selection of extrinsically valuable traits, using Nietzsche’s notion of ‘slavish’ forms of evaluation: values reducible to the (...)
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  13.  87
    Capitalism and its Contentments: A Nietzschean Critique of Ideology Critique.Donovan Miyasaki - manuscript
    Nietzsche’s psychological theory of the drives calls into question two common assumptions of ideology critique: 1) that ideology is fetishistic, substituting false satisfactions for true ones, and 2) that ideology is falsification; it conceals exploitation. In contrast, a Nietzschean approach begins from the truth of ideology: that capitalism produces an authentic contentment that makes the concealment of exploitation unnecessary. And it critiques ideology from the same standpoint: capitalism produces pleasures too efficiently, an overproduction of desire that is impossible to sustain (...)
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  14. The Equivocal Use of Power in Nietzsche’s Failed Anti-Egalitarianism.Donovan Miyasaki - 2014 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 11 (4):1-32.
    This paper argues that Nietzsche’s anti-egalitarianism depends on equivocation between conceptions of power as quantitative superiority and qualitative feeling and between associated conceptions of equality as similarity and opposition or resistance . Nietzsche’s key arguments against equality fail when applied to the qualitative form of power, since the feeling of power does not directly correlate with quantitative ability and requires relatively equal or proportional resistance. Consequently, Nietzsche’s commitment to the promotion of humanity’s highest individuals does not entail the rejection of (...)
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  15.  65
    Art as Self-Origination in Winckelmann and Hegel.Donovan Miyasaki - 2006 - Graduate Faculty Philosophy Journal 27 (1):129-150.
    Eighteenth-century art historian Johann Joachim Winckelmann (1717-1768) shared with Hegel a profound admiration for the art and culture of ancient Greece. Both viewed ancient Greece as, in some sense, an ideal to which the modern world might aspire—a pinnacle of spiritual perfection and originality that contemporary civilization might, through an understanding of ancient Greek culture, one day equal or surpass. This rather competitive form of nostalgia suggests a paradoxical demand to produce an original and higher state of culture through the (...)
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  16.  42
    The Evasion of Gender in Freudian Fetishism.Donovan Miyasaki - 2003 - Psychoanalysis, Culture, and Society 8 (2):289-98.
    In Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality, Freud rejects the notion of a biologically determined connection of instinct to object, a position which helps him avoid the designation of all variations from heterosexuality as either “degenerate” or “pathological.” However, the gender roles and relations commonly attributed to heterosexuality are already implicit in his understanding of sexual instinct and aim. Consequently, even variations from the normal sexual object and aim exemplify, on his interpretation, the clichéd hierarchical opposition of femininity and (...)
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  17.  58
    La Violence Politique Comme Mauvaise Foi Dans Le Sang des Autres (French Version).Donovan Miyasaki - 2008 - In Julia Kristeva, Pascale Fautrier, Anne Strasser & Pierre-Louis Fort (eds.), (Re) découvrir l’œuvre de Simone de Beauvoir – Du Deuxième Sexe à La Cérémonie des adieux. Éditions Le Bord de l’Eau.
    The Blood of Others begins at the bedside of a mortally wounded Résistance fighter named Hélène Bertrand. We encounter her from the point of view of Jean Blomart, her friend and lover, who recounts the story of their relationship : their first meeting, unhappy romance, bitter breakup, and eventual reunion as fellow fighters for the liberation of occupied France. The novel invites the reader to interpret Hélène and Jean’s story as one of positive ethical development. On this progressive reading, although (...)
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  18.  11
    Nietzsche Contra Freud on Bad Conscience.Donovan Miyasaki - 2010 - Nietzsche Studien 39:434-454.
    In the following essay, I argue that Nietzsche’s conception of moral conscience is opposed to Freud’s view in a number of important respects. Freudian moral conscience is essentially and irredeemably a bad conscience, based in an insurmountable conflict of desire and morality and characterized by repression, subordination to prohibition, and inevitable feelings of guilt. Nietzschean conscience, on the contrary, is grounded in affirmation, memory, individual sover- eignty, and the feelings of pride and power. Nietzsche’s psychology of “the will to power” (...)
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  19. Freud or Nietzsche: The Drives, Pleasure, and Social Happiness.Donovan Miyasaki - 2004 - Dissertation, University of Toronto
    Many commentators have remarked upon the striking points of correspondence that can be found in the works of Freud and Nietzsche. However, this essay argues that on the subject of desire their work presents us with a radical choice: Freud or Nietzsche. I first argue that Freud’s theory of desire is grounded in the principle of inertia, a principle that is incompatible with his later theory of Eros and the life drive. Furthermore, the principle of inertia is not essentially distinct (...)
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