Friendship and Nihilism

Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 75 (1):5-23 (2013)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

When we, from a Nietzschean perspective, read through the history of philosophical thinking about friendship, we find that the idealization of friendship leads inevitably to the problem of nihilism. This confronts us with the question whether friendship is still possible under nihilistic conditions. Nietzsche himself claims on the one hand that in our nihilistic condition only something like friendship can save us, but on the other hand that friendship itself has been unmasked and has become impossible by these very conditions. It seems we are struck in the nihilistic paradox of not being allowed to believe in the possibility of what we cannot do without. Literary imagination since the 19th century seems to make us even more skeptical. Maybe Beckett provides an illustration of a way out that fits well with Nietzsche’s claim that only “the most moderate, those who do not require any extreme articles of faith‘ will be able to cope with nihilism. We might extend this to a moderate concept of friendship: in an age in which the great ideal of friendship erodes together with all ideality, we can only survive as long as we know that we’re not alone. Maybe that’s friendship: no perfection, no virtuosity, no lofty ideal, but simply this: to know that one is not all alone.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 93,031

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Kant, Nietzsche and the idealization of friendship into nihilism.Paul van Tongeren - 2013 - Kriterion: Journal of Philosophy 54 (128):401-417.
Reproduction of subjectivity: neoliberalism and friendship.Mustafa Demirtaş - forthcoming - Journal for Cultural Research:1-14.
Beyond Ideals of Friendship.Simon Keller - forthcoming - Journal of Applied Philosophy.
Friendship and the grounds of reasons.Diane Jeske - 2008 - Les Ateliers de L’Ethique 3 (1):61-69.
The Metaphysics of Friendship. On Normativity as heightened vitality.Björn Freter - 2019 - Yearbook of the Irish Philosophical Society 2016 (2016/2017):12-24.

Analytics

Added to PP
2017-10-19

Downloads
13 (#1,065,206)

6 months
1 (#1,516,001)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Paul Van Tongeren
Radboud University Nijmegen

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references