Nietzsche contra Darwin

Abstract

Nietzsche attributes 'will power' to all living things, but this seems in sharp conflict with other positions important to him-and implausible besides. The doctrine smacks of both metaphysics and anthropomorphizing, which he elsewhere derides. Will to power seems to be an intentional end-directedness, involving cognitive or representational powers he is rightly loath to attribute to all organisms, and tends to downplay even in persons. This paper argues that we find a stronger reading of will to power-both more plausible and more consistent with Nietzsche's other views-by developing his affinities with Darwinism. By seeing will to power as an 'internal revision' to Darwinism, opposing the latter's stress (as Nietzsche thinks) on 'survival', but assenting to its uses of natural selection, we can ground or naturalize that notion, congenially to Nietzsche and to us

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References found in this work

On the Origin of Species.Charles Darwin - 2008 - Oxford University Press.
Functional Analysis.Robert Cummins - 1975 - Journal of Philosophy 72 (November):741-64.
Functions.Larry Wright - 1973 - Philosophical Review 82 (2):139-168.
In Defense of Proper Functions.Ruth Garrett Millikan - 1989 - Philosophy of Science 56 (June):288-302.

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Citations of this work

Ontology and Ethics at the Intersection of Phenomenology and Environmental Philosophy.Iain Thomson - 2004 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 47 (4):380 – 412.
Nietzsche Contra Darwin.John Richardson - 2002 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 65 (3):537-575.
Nietzsche Was No Darwinian.Patrick Forber - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 75 (2):369–382.
The Abyss, or the Insufficiency of Ethical Nihilism for Nietzsche’s Übermensch.Jan Gresil Kahambing - 2020 - Ethics and Bioethics (in Central Europe) 10 (3-4):155-172.

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