Concepts of Philosophy

Concepts of Philosophy


Resources (including Classics of Western Philosophy) should be listed in
a bibliography and citations documented (endnotes please). Do not use internet sources.

1. Friedrich Nietzsche on Ressentiment, Socrates and decay, conceptual mummies, and becoming.

Explain how Nietzsche thinks concepts like justice, material substance, and souls are created by the human
will and language (read: human insecurities and fear). Explain how justice is used by the weak to take
revenge on the strong. If there is no truth in the world (no purpose in life, no such thing as right and
wrong) why should a person try to do anything according to Nietzsche? What do you think? Discuss the
history of metaphysics that Nietzsche criticizes (e.g., moral goodness, Christianity, human rights, justice,
helping the poor) and give your reasons for thinking Nietzsche’s analysis is sound or unsound.
2. Traditional epistemology attempts to ground knowledge on something objective (something that does
not have anything to do with my own subjective feelings). Søren Kierkegaard reverses this ordering and
places subjectivity ahead of objective\rational truths. Explain and critically evaluate Kierkegaard’s critique
of passion, commitment, and subjectivity. Using Pontius Pilot, the Pagan who prays in a true spirit (versus
the Christian who prays in a false spirit), and Kierkegaard’s Stages On Life’s Way as examples, explain
why the pleasure seeker at the aesthetic level and the rule follower at the ethical level are making
inauthentic\objective choices.

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