The gospel of superman - by Henri Lichtenberger - PDF (1912)

The gospel of superman: the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche

It is gratifying to note that the interest recently aroused in Nietzsche in English-speaking countries has reached a point that original or translated works dealing with the broad outlines or particular divisions of his philosophy have become necessary. 

This book of Professor Lichtenberger s, however (which has passed through fourteen editions in France), is, I believe, the first concerning Nietzsche to be translated from the French, a fact which calls for a word or two of comment. There seems to be something in the French character and the French language which, while allowing for the clear exposition of original thought, allows likewise for the no less clear interpretation of ideas that have at first been presented to the world through the medium of a more obscure or less pliable tongue. 

Readers of Macaulay will remember the essay in which, referring to such men as Locke and Hobbes, he mentions that France had, during a long period, acted as the interpreter of English thought to the Continent of Europe. A particularly striking instance is the case of Jeremy Bentham, whose writings, notwithstanding their depth of thought and their applicability to the conditions and needs of the time,  were simply unreadable in their loosely-arranged English form, until at last a Frenchman,

 M. Dumont translated them and put them before the public as a lucid and homogeneous work. The French, again, have not been blind to this particular gift of theirs: indeed, they have even invented a jocular anecdote about the French translator of Goethe s Faust, Gerard de Nerval, to whom the great German poet is said to have written:  (I have never understood myself so well as when reading you). 

What is not clear, to use Voltaire s expression, is not French; and the student of Nietzsche will doubtless appreciate the truth of this assertion in reading Professor Lichtenberger s book on Nietzsche. 

The sympathetic and penetrating qualities of the French mind, added to the clearness of language already referred to, give us a distinct and unequivocal presentation of the German philosopher. In the present instance clearness of arrangement is even more necessary than the clearness of style; for Nietzsche s physical condition, as is well known to those acquainted with his life, often necessitated his jotting down his thoughts in a haphazard form a form which has been still further complicated by the posthumous publication of so many writings which had obviously not received the philosopher s finishing touches. In dealing with this mass of material, 

Professor Lichtenberger has exhibited the sympathetic qualities and soundness of judgment that long experience has led us to associate with French men of letters. His book does not profess to show how Nietzsche s philosophy may be applied to modern problems, but it gives us so definite a view of Nietzsche s life, character, and works that the reader will be at no loss as to what direction his own further studies of the philosopher should take.
Contents of the book:

I. The character of Friedrich Nietzsche - I
Ii. Nietzsche s intellectual emancipation - 33
Iii. Nietzsche the philosopher - 90
Iv. Nietzsche s system negative side: man- 113
V. Nietzsche s system (continued) positive Side: superman 165
Vi. Conclusion - 193
Appendix- 211
Bibliography - - 217

book details :
  • Author: Henri Lichtenberger
  • Publication date1912
  • Company: New York: Macmillan

  • Download The gospel of superman 7 MB


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