Undergraduate: Level 6
Thursday 03 October 2019
Saturday 14 December 2019
12 April 2019
Requisites for this module
BA VV15 Philosophy and History,
BA VV16 Philosophy and History (Including Placement Year),
BA VV51 Philosophy and History (Including Foundation Year),
BA VV5C Philosophy and History (Including Year Abroad),
BA VV5X Philosophy and History (Including Foundation Year and Year Abroad)
This module will be devoted to a close study of Nietzsche`s 1887 On the Genealogy of Morality, one of Nietzsche`s most influential works and most difficult works. Our primary task will be interpreting the three essays that make up the Genealogy. This will involve addressing many of the most significant themes in Nietzsche`s late work, including the opposition between master and slave moralities, ressentiment, bad conscience, guilt, and nihilism. We will also consider what kind of work On the Genealogy of Morality is, taking into account Nietzsche`s emphasis on psychology, history, and genealogy, and his presentation of various figures, including the Priest, the Sovereign Individual, the Artist, and the Philosopher
In preparation for our reading of On the Genealogy of Morality, we will spend the first three weeks considering methodological issues raised by Nietzsche's emphasis on psychology and history, as well as this deployment of rhetoric. In addition to the Genealogy, we draw on his other works, including the Untimely Meditations, The Gay Science, and Beyond Good and Evil.
This module aims to give students a better understanding of Nietzsche`s philosophical project in his late works, and the role in that project of his `attack on morality`.
By the end of the module students will:
* be prepared to write a critical essay on some aspect of Nietzsche`s On the Genealogy of Morality;
* have acquired a better understanding of Nietzsche`s position in the history of Western philosophy in general and in the history of moral philosophy in particular;
* have developed oral and written skills in philosophic exegesis and argumentation;
* have progressed in their thinking about a number of central philosophic issues, including questions concerning ethical agency, the nature of normativity, the philosophy of Christianity, and the value of modern morality.
Incoming Study Abroad students must have already taken two philosophy modules.
1 x two-hour seminar each week. Week 8 is a Reading Week.
1x one-hour presentations and discussion
- Breazeale, Daniel. (1997) 'On the Advantage and Disadvantage of History for Life', in Untimely meditations, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. vol. Cambridge texts in the history of philosophy
- Nietzsche, Friedrich Wilhelm; Kaufmann, Walter Arnold; Hollingdale, R. J. (1967) The will to power, New York: Vintage Books.
- Hatab, Lawrence J. (2008) Nietzsche's On the genealogy of morality: an introduction, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
- Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche; R. J. Hollingdale. (1968, reprinted 1985) Twilight of the idols: and, The Anti-Christ, Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. vol. Penguin classics
- Nietzsche, Friedrich Wilhelm. (c1990) Beyond good and evil: prelude to a philosophy of the future, London: Penguin Books. vol. Penguin classics
- Nietzsche, Friedrich Wilhelm; Kaufmann, Walter Arnold. (1974) The gay science: with a prelude in rhymes and an appendix of songs, New York: Vintage Books.
The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course. The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students. Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.
Assessment items, weightings and deadlines
|Coursework / exam
||Essay 1 (3000 Words)
||Essay 2 (3000 Words)
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Steve Gormley
Dr Thomas Joseph Stern
University College London
Available via Moodle
Of 36 hours, 35 (97.2%) hours available to students:
1 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).
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