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By Friedrich Nietzsche

In overdue 1888, purely weeks prior to his ultimate cave in into insanity, Nietzsche (1844–1900) got down to compose his autobiography, and Ecce Homo continues to be the most exciting but weird and wonderful examples of the style ever written. during this notable paintings Nietzsche lines his lifestyles, paintings and improvement as a thinker, examines the heroes he has pointed out with, struggled opposed to after which triumph over – Schopenhauer, Wagner, Socrates, Christ – and predicts the cataclysmic influence of his 'forthcoming revelation of all values'. either self-celebrating and self-mocking, penetrating and weird, Ecce Homo offers the ultimate, definitive expression to Nietzsche's major ideals and is in each approach his final testomony.

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Extra info for Ecce Homo (Penguin Classics)

Sample text

Up to this point no question as to the validity of the text published in 1908 can arise, since the author passed it for publication: it is over the remainder of the text that controversy has arisen. It was started by Erich Podach – a very experienced Nietzsche-scholar to whom a Nietzsche-biographer is in debt – with the publication in 1961 of his Friedrich Nietzsches Werke des Zusammenbruchs, a printing of manuscript versions of Nietzsche’s last works with extensive editorial comment. The item in which Podach’s edition departs most widely from the accepted version is Ecce Homo, which Podach claims never achieved a final, completed form in Nietzsche’s hands, the accepted version being a redaction by Peter Gast: he then prints a version of Ecce Homo which includes variant passages, superseded drafts and repetitions.

Fourthly: I attack only things where any kind of personal difference is excluded, where there is no background of bad experience. On the contrary, to attack is with me a proof of good will, under certain circumstances of gratitude. I do honour, I confer distinction when I associate my name with a cause, a person: for or against – that is in this regard a matter of indifference to me. If I wage war on Christianity I have a right to do so, because I have never experienced anything disagreeable or frustrating from that direction – the most serious Christians have always been well disposed towards me.

My reproach against those who practise pity is that shame, reverence, a delicate feeling for distance easily eludes them, that pity instantly smells of mob and is so like bad manners as to be mistaken for them – that the hands of pity can under certain circumstances intrude downright destructively into a great destiny, into a solitariness where wounds are nursed, into a privilege for great guilt. I count the overcoming of pity among the noble virtues: I have, as ‘Zarathustra’s Temptation’, invented a case in which a great cry of distress reaches him, in which pity like an ultimate sin seeks to attack him, to seduce him from allegiance to himself.

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