The Birth of Tragedy (1872)

The Birth of Tragedy Out of the Spirit of Music is a work of dramatic theory that was first published work by Nietzsche in 1872. It was reissued in 1886 with the title The Birth of Tragedy, Or: Hellenism and Pessimism. In it, Nietzsche examines Ancient Greek tragedy as a reflection and affirmation of the human condition. Nietzsche makes it clear in The Birth of Tragedy that he is discussing aesthetics on his own terms. He creates a new frame of reference for his readers to understand art and the artistic process, that is, the dualistic opposition between Apollo and Dionysus.

Beyond Good and Evil (1886)

Beyond Good and Evil is a comprehensive overview of Nietzsche’s mature philosophy that was published in 1886. Nietzsche presents his worldview in a series of 296 two-dimensional aphorisms—ranging in length from a few sentences to a few pages—each approximating a more complex worldview. Beyond Good and Evil is Nietzsche’s concept of perspectivism in practice: we can read every aphorism as one different perspective from which to look at Nietzsche’s philosophy. The work also includes Nietzsche’s well-known idea of the Will to Power.

Genealogy of Morals (1887)

Genealogy of Morals was written and published in 1887. Sometimes translated as On the Genealogy of Morality, it consists of three essays, each of which questions the value of our moral concepts and examines their evolution. The First Essay is entitled “‘Good and Evil,’ ‘Good and Bad.’” The Second Essay is called “‘Guilt,’ ‘Bad Conscience,’ and the Like.” The Third Essay asks the question, “What Is the Meaning of Ascetic Ideals?”

Popular pages: Thus Spoke Zarathustra