Thursday, May 15, 2008

New "Philosophical Topics" Issue Devoted to Nietzsche

The fall 2005 Philosophical Topics (vol. 33, no. 2) devoted to Nietzsche (and edited by Randall Havas and Edward Minar) has finally appeared! My "Nietzsche's Theory of the Will" paper from Philosopher's Imprint is reprinted here, but all the other contributions are new. The other papers are:

"Nietzsche on Language: Before and After Wittgenstein" by Maria Alvarez and Aaron Ridley (both University of Southampton)

"Perspectivism as Ephexis in Interpretation" by Jessica N. Berry (Georgia State University) (this is an important challenge to the treatment of perspectivism favored in earlier work by Maudemarie Clark, myself, and others; Berry offers a new reading of perspectivism linking it to ancient skepticism)

"Nietzsche, the Greeks, and Happiness (with Special Reference to Aristotle and Epicurus)" by Richard Bett (Johns Hopkins University) (it is very nice to see Bett, who has also written a very good piece on Nietzsche and ancient skepticism, writing again on Nietzsche!)

"Our Virtues" by Robert Guay (State University of New York at Binghamton)

"Nietzschean Equality" by Randall Havas (Willamette University)

"On Failing to Be Agents: Freedom, Servitude, and the Concept of 'the Weak' in Nietzsche's Practical Philosophy" by David Owen (University of Southampton [Politics])

"Nietzsche on Pleasure and Power" by Bernard Reginster (Brown University)

"Nietzsche and the Perspectival" by Richard Schacht (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign)

"Philosophy and the Politics of Cultural Revolution" by Tracy B. Strong (University of California, San Diego [Political Science])

I've only just perused the volume (apart from Berry's essay, which I've read before and recommend), but the essays by Bett and Reginster look to be especially interesting. A curiosity in the first essay, by Alvarez and Ridley, that caught my attention. They refer (p. 1) to work which "draw[s] connections between Nietzsche's work and issues and thinkers already established within the analytic tradition, in the hope or expectation that light might be shed thereby in one direction or the other." The footnote accompanying this sentence then reads:

A prominent example is Brian Leiter's recent attempt to understand
Nietzsche along the lines suggested by contemporary analytic naturalism.
See Leiter, Nietzsche on Morality (London: Routledge, 2002).

But the first chapter of my book situates Nietzsche's naturalism by reference to Hume, and compares it also to the sense in which Stroud identified Hume, Marx, and Freud as "naturalists." I would not have thought of those thinkers as "contemporary analytic naturalists"!


Unknown said...

how does one go about obtaining a copy of vol. 33 no. 2 of philosophical topics?

Brian Leiter said...

Good university libraries ought to subscribe to this journal, which is rather well-established. It is published by the University of Arkansas Press, and can probably be purchased directly from them.

Anonymous said...

Brian, perhaps they mean that the distinctions between Methodological and Substantive Naturalism, and Results Continuity and Methods Continuity are distinctions made by analytic philosophers, e.g., Railton, Quine.

You take these distinctions to shed some light on N's naturalism.

The reason why this is objectionable is somewhat elusive. But that might be what they're referring to.

Matthew Pianalto said...

Re: alexander's question:

If you want a copy for your own, info about Philosophical Topics is here, but it might help expedite ordering to contact the person who handles purchasing, Kathy Willis at:

(Unfortunately, the site isn't very order-friendly: I'll seek to have this fixed. -Matt Pianalto, Editorial Assistant for Philosophical Topics)

Brian Leiter said...

Kevin, I guess that must be what they had in mind, but it's still strangely misleading, since that is merely taxonomic, the substantive comparison was with Hume (and also Marx and Freud).

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