Nietzsche opposed Christianity, but supported Aryanism and Judaism

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NIETZSCHE AND JEWISH CULTURE, Edited by Jacob Golomb (Routledge, London and New York 1997).

This book is a collection of essays by Jewish authors (each chapter by a different author); footnotes are included at the end of chapters 2 and 3; Greek words are rendered in Latin script. Peter Myers, May 3, 2001; update September 22, 2002; my comments are shown {thus}.

The rehabilitation of Nietzsche, his sanitation as safe for Zionists and Aryanists of the Imperial kind, made him a rival to Marx, influencing the outcome of the Cold War.

{p. 21; Chapter 2} Weaver Santaniello, A POST-HOLOCAUST RE-EXAMINATION OF NIETZSCHE AND THE JEWS vis-a-vis Christendom and Nazism

{p. 31} Toward the Genealogy of Morals

In spite of the numerous pro-Semitic passages prevalent throughout the corpus of Nietzsche's works, due to Nazi distortions decades later, perhaps no passage reverberates in contemporary minds more than his notorious attribution of the slave revolt in morality to priestly Judea recorded in section 7 of the first essays in the Genealogy of Morals. Here, in tones bordering on a tantrum Nietzsche ascribes the slave revolt as stemming from the root of [priestly] Jewish hatred, "the sublimest kind of hatred."51 Although this one segment has traditionally evoked hasty charges that Nietzsche himself was an anti-Semite, it is seldom noted that Nietzsche is not attacking contemporary Jewry but priestly Judea, which he believes gave rise to (anti-Semitic) Christianity. Nor is frequently noted that elsewhere throughout the Genealogy's three essays Nietzsche - in no less tyrannical tones - reiterates that the psychological disposition of ressentiment lurks within the "antisemites where it has always bloomed";52 that he contrasts the superior Old Testament with the New;53 and that his overall wrath is unleashed upon the entire history of Christianity, especially its visions of hell and the psychic pleasures, the "cellar rodents of vengefulness and hatred" derived from imaging pagans perishing in the wrath of God's fire at the Final Judgement.54 Throughout the Genealogy, Nietzsche rants against "the antisemites who today roll their eyes in a Christian-Aryan bourgeois manner," and at the conclusion of the work, explodes mercilessly against the whole of modern Germany, including Duhring, Renan and the contemporary Lutheran state-church. He crucifies the "worms of vengefulness and rancor" that swarm on the soil of modern Europe, describing anti-Semites as "moral masturbators," "hangmen" and as those who represent the "will to power of the weakest": "They are all men of ressentiment, physiologlcally unfortunate and worm-eaten ... inexhaustible and insatiable in outbursts against the fortunate and happy."55 Thus, more in-depth evaluations of the Genealogy - aside from isolated readings of the (priestly) Jewish slave revolt as briefly recorded in the first essay - are necessary for discerning whether Nietzsche himself was

{p. 32} of sound mind, and also for grasping why the most vicious antiSemites of his time were offended by, and in fact retaliated against, Nietzsche's treatise.56

... the structure of the Genealogy is a treatise on the "genealogy of morals" in a somewhat literal sense. The first essay, from the original Aryan race to Napoleon, places the slave revolt and the Judeo-Christian tradition at the center. The second goes from the origin of bad conscience and its expression in the state to the atonement (Christianity) and ends with the announcement that the Antichrist and anti-nihilst must triumph over God and nothingness. And the third begins with a discussion of Nietzsche's former heroes Wagner and Schopenhauer, and ends with the claim that Christian morality and the ascetic ideal must be overcome: "And, to repeat in conclusion what I said at the beginning; man would rather will nothingness than not will."57

In the infamous section 7, in contrast to the Greek barbaric nobles, Nietzsche attributes the slave revolt in morality to the priestly caste of Judea that reaches its fruition with Christianity: "That with the Jews there begins the slave revolt in morality: that revolt which has a history of two thousand years behind it and which we no longer see because it - has been victorious."58 The moral revolt which "has two thousand years behind it" is an allusion to the Christian religion; the "victorious" morality of modern-day Germany that Nietzsche abhors is the priestly morality of Judea that is continued in Christianity. The point here is simply that Nietzsche is describing Christianity's inheritance of priestly Judea, as distinct from original Israel. And he expounds this point in section 9.

After describing the slave revolt (section 7) and stating that the Judeo-Christian morality of modern Germany has triumphed over the masters, "everything is becoming Judaized, Christianized, and mob-ized (what do the words matter!)" (section 9), Nietzsche does not use the term "Israel" or "Jews" again in the essay unless he is referring specifically to Christians. There is one exception to this (section 16), which I will address shortly. The language in the first essay borders on wrath, particularly when he uses the word Jew: "everywhere that man has become tame or desires to become tame: three Jews, as is known, and one Jewess (Jesus of Nazareth, the

{p. 33} fisherman Peter, the rug weaver Paul ... Mary)."59 However, he adopts the rhetoric not to fuel secular or Christian anti-Semites, who were his enemies. He is attempting to annoy Christians who denied their Jewishness, as well as create conflict between anarchists and Christians over the sole ingredient which separated them: Christianity's relationship to Judaism. By attacking priestly Judea, Nietzsche is denigrating that strand of Judaism that Christian anti-Semites claimed as their ancestor, which allegedly professed the coming Messiah - as represented by Jesus Christ. This serves to explain the logistics of why Nietzsche derided priestly Judea, all the while upholding contemporary Jewry and original Israel. Conversely, it also illuminates why prominent (Christian and anti-Christian) Aryan racial supremacists, such as Renan, Duhring and Forster, retaliated against Nietzsche's Genealogy.

Historically, the myth of the Germanic-Aryan race was formed and promoted by racial theorists such as Gobineau, Wagner and Renan well before the Genealogy appeared. In the Genealogy, Nietzsche was entering the political dialogue of his time, presenting an alternative version of the Aryan master race; a version that would have inflamed anti-Jewish racists. In the texts, Nietzsche severs the Germanic bloodline from Aryan humanity ("between the old Germanic tribes and us Germans there exists hardly a conceptual relationship, let alone one of blood"),60 proclaims mixed races instead (the blond beast is at the bottom of all "noble races," including "the Roman, Arabian, Germanic, Japanese nobility, the Homeric heroes, and the Scandinavian Vikings")6l and exalts the Jews over the Germans ("one only has to compare similarly gifted nations - the Chinese or the Germans, for instance - with the Jews, to sense which is of the first and which of the fifth rank").62 Although decades later the Nazis uplifted terms like the "blond beast" to create the illusion that Nietzsche supported Aryan racial supremacy, Nietzsche was, in fact, opposing the actual precursors of the Third Reich, of which Nazi leaders were well aware. Initially, Nietzsche used the term "blond beast" when referring to the state and the Christian church of the Middle Ages.63

The Antichrist

Nietzsche's war against the proto-Nazis continues in the Antichrist, wherein he opposes the Christian theologian Ernst Renan, whose anti-Semitic biography, The Life of Jesus,was a bestseller throughout

{p. 34} Europe. Renan demeaned original Israel and contemporary Jewry, locating the spiritual development of Christianity with the priestly-prophetic strand of Judaism, especially the prophet Isaiah. Thus, again, although surface readings of the Antichrist could suggest that Nietzsche demeans priestly-prophetic Judaism for no apparent reason, placing his stance in dialogue with that of his anti-Semitic opponent Renan reveals that Nietzsche's prime motive was not a capricious assault on Judaism (or the Jews), but was geared to reverse Renan's anti-Semitic Christian theology.

For instance, in Chapter 10, "The Preachings on the Lake," Renan writes that Jesus's preaching, in his early ministry, "was gentle and pleasing, breathing Nature and the perfume of the fields."64 After meeting with opposition from his "enemies," Jesus eventually comes to regard himself as the violent judge who would return to condemn the world and judge his opponents.65 By Chapter 20, Jesus is beset even more with bitterness, resentment and reproachfulness toward those who would not believe in him. Renan writes:

{quote} He was no longer the mild teacher who delivered the "Sermon on the Mount," who had met with neither resistance nor difficulty.... And yet many of the recommendations which he addressed to his disciples contain the germs of a true fanaticism.... Must we reproach him for this? No revolution is effected without some harshness .... The invincible obstacle to the ideas of Jesus came especially from orthodox Judaism, represented by the Pharisees. Jesus became more and more alienated from the ancient Law.66 {endquote}

In regards to this evolvement, Nietzsche jests: "[T]here is a gaping contradlction between the sermonizer on the mount, lake and meadow ... and that fanatic of aggression, that mortal enemy of theologians and priests whom Renan's malice has glorified as le grand mattre en ironie."67

Renan writes that Jesus increasingly "came to think of himself" as "the destroyer of Judaism"; he "completely lost his Jewish faith," and "far from continuing Judaism, Jesus represents the rupture with the Jewish spirit": "The general march of Christianity has been to remove itself more and more from Judaism. It will become perfect in returning to Jesus, but certainly not in returning to Judaism."68 Renan concludes that the Old Jewish party, the Mosaic Law, was responsible for Jesus's death; therefore, nineteenth-century Jews are responsible for Christ's: "Consequently, every Jew who suffers today

{p. 35} for the murder of Jesus has the right to complain.... But nations, like individuals have their responsibilities, and if ever crime was the crime of a nation, it was the death of Jesus."69

Renan's book, released in 1864, was not only popular within the academy; it sold like a "Waverly novel" among the populace from the first hour of its publication. Five months after its release, eleven editions (100,000 books) had been exhausted and it was already translated into German, Italian and Dutch, rapidly to be followed by additional translations. In 1927, the book, which is now regarded as one of the two anti-Semitic bestsellers throughout Europe in the nineteenth century, was still read more widely than any other biography on Jesus.70

In the Genealogy, Nietzsche refers to Renan in connection with Duhring and the Aryan myth; in the Nachlass (1884) he regards him a weak-willed representative of "herd animal" democratic Europe; and in Twilight, he names him as one among the family of Rousseau and derogatorily calls him a democrat:71

{quote} With no little ambition, he wishes to represent an aristocracy of the spirit: yet at the same time he is on his knees before its very counter-doctrine, the evangile des humbles - and not only on his knees. To what avail is all free-spiritedness ... if in one's guts one is still a Christian, a Catholic - in fact, a priest! ... This spirit of Renan's a spirit which is enervated, is one more calamity for poor, sick, will-sick France.72 {endquote}

In the Antichrist, Nietzsche addresses Renan's notion of the Last Judgement. He connects what he regards as the "propaganda" of the early Christian community which "created its god according to its needs and put words into its Master's mouth" to "those wholly unevangelical concepts it now cannot do without: the return, the 'Last Judgment,' every kind of temporal expectation and promise."73 Nietzsche traces anti-Semitism from the early Christian community to Rousseau to contemporaries such as Renan and Duhring, whom Nietzsche regards as those needing to be reckoned with.74

Nietzsche not only opposes Renan's preference for the Christian God to that of the powerful Yahweh, he opposes Renan's notion of Jesus as a genius and a hero. When Renan regards Jesus as a genius, it is in reference to Jesus's initial coming to self-consciousness that he would be a violent judge ushering in the apocalyptic kingdom, which would consist of a "sudden renovation of the world."75 According to Renan, Jesus applied to himself the title "Son of Man"

{p. 36} and affirmed the "coming catastrophe" in which he was to figure as judge, clothed with full powers which had been delegated to him from the Ancient of Days. Renan writes: "Beset by an idea [the Kingdom of God], gradually becoming more and more imperious (imperieux ) and exclusive, Jesus proceeds henceforth with a kind of fatal impassability in the path marked out by his astonishing genius."76 In the Antichrist, Nietzsche is responding to that passage:

{quote} To repeat, I am against any attempt to introduce the fanatic into the Redeemer type; the word imperieux, which Renan uses, is alone enough to annul the type. The "glad tidings" are precisely that there are no longer any opposites; the kingdom of heaven belongs to the children.... Such a faith is not angry, does not reproach, does not resist; it does not bring "the sword".77 {endquote}

Renan located the origin of Christianity with the prophet Isaiah, discarded original Israel and held nineteenth-century Jews, Israel's remnants, responsible for the death of Jesus.78 Nietzsche's position is the exact reverse. Although Nietzsche concurs with Renan that Christianity originated with the prophet Isaiah, he disagrees that this represents spiritual progress, but rather, the origin of Israel's demise which has culminated in the (anti-Semitic) Christianity of ressentiment.79 The slave morality of ressentiment, Nietzsche insists, began with the death on the cross; it reached its most profound form of vengefulness when the disciples totally misunderstood Jesus's message concerning the kingdom of God, and instead opted for the apocalyptic Last Judgement.80 "What are the glad tidings?" Nietzsche repeatedly asks. The glad tidings Jesus brings are that the concepts of guilt, sin and punishment are abolished. Sin, that which separates humans from God, is destroyed. The kingdom of God is nothing that one expects; it has no yesterday or today; it will not come in the future or in a thousand years: "The kingdom of God is in you."81 Thus, although shallow readings of Nietzsche's Antichrist have led to erroneous claims that Nietzsche was "anti-Semitic" for "attacking" Judaism; it is crucial to recognize that Nietzsche's position serves to refute the fundamental position of anti-Semitic Christian theology. And it is also crucial to realize that much confusion regarding Nietzsche's position stems not from any lack of clarity or coherence of Nietzsche's part, but because Elisabeth and the Nazis misquoted his words and used them against the Jews decades later. That tactic created havoc and has successfully confused

{p. 37} interpreters to this very day. It has made sorting out Nietzsche's views toward Judaism and the Jews extremely difficult, to the point where the topic itself has become an emotionally sensitive issue; an issue that has led many well-meaning persons to "blame" Nietzsche for his fierce rhetoric, and thus for providing "anti-Semitic fuel" for the Nazis, who allegedly "learned" from him. Moreover - perhaps to the less well-intentioned - the tactic also serves to protect Elisabeth's type of Christendom: whereas many writing after the Nazi era have been quick to point out Nietzsche's negative critique of ancient Judea, works addressing Nietzsche's critique of Christian anti-Semitism are virtually non-existent.

{p. 50; footnotes for ch. 2} 51 GMI 8. 52 GMII 11. 53 GM III 22. 54 GM I 1 4ff. 55 GM III 14, III 26. 56 In 1887, Nietzsche's works were attacked in the Antisemitische Correspondenz (an anti-Semitic newsletter), depicted as "eccentric," "pathological" and "psychiatric." Cf. letter to Paul Deussen, Nice, 3 January 1888, in Samtliche Briefe, 8 vols (Berlin: de Gruyter, 1975-84), vol. 8 939, p. 220. The philosopher welcomed the small, but growing number of negative reviews of his last two works (Beyond Good and Evil and The Genealogy of Morals?, for the public disapproval appeared to him a sign that he was becomlng somewhat of an "influence" in Germany: "You can guess that [Dr Forster] and I have to exert ourselves to the uttermost to avoid treating each other openly as enemies.... The anti-Semitic pamphlets shower down wildly upon me (which pleases me a hundred times more than their earlier restraint)," letter to Franz Overbeck, Nice, 3 February 1888, in L 162, p. 282. 57 GM III 28. 58 GMI 7. 59 GMI 16. 60 GMI 11. 61 GMI 11. 62 GM I 16, BGE 251. 63 The term "blond beast" occurs five times throughout Nietzsche's writing (three times in the first section of the Genealogy, once in the second section, and once in Twilight of the Idols). 64 Ernst Renan, The Life of Jesus intro. John Haynes Holmes (New York: Random House, 1927), p. 186. 65 Ibid. 66 Ibid. 67 AC 31. Renan,Jesus, p. 295. 68 Renan, Jesus, pp. 224, 235, and 39l. The last passage echoes Renan's remark in his Histoire generale des langues Semitiques (Paris, 1878): "Once this mission [monotheism] was accomplished, the Semitic race rapidly declined and left it to the Aryan race alone to lead the march of human destiny," quoted in Leon Poliakov, The Aryan Myth, tr. kdmund Howard (Chatto: Sussex University Press, l975), p. 207. 69 Renan, Jesus, p. 358. 70 As the author's introduction to the English translation of the 1927 edition notes, Renan's La Vie de Jesus sold like a Waverly novel among

{p. 70} the academy and the populace alike, highly esteemed for its "beautiful style" which flourished throughout Renan's "brilliant" retelling of Jesus's story. Renan, the introduction continues, was a "supreme figure" among the scholars of his time, a simple, sincere, courageous saint, "even if judged by the teachings of the Galilean lake." To Holocaust scholars and historians of anti-Semitism, however Renan's storytelling is neither beautiful not brilliant. Renan's Vie de Jesus, together with Edouard Drumont's La France juive, the latter of which paved the way for large-scale anti-Semitic propaganda in France, were the two anti-Semitic bestsellers in the latter half of the nineteenth century. Cf. Leon Poliakov, A History of Anti-Semitism, vol. 4 (New York: Vanguard Press, 1985), pp. 39-40; Poliakov, Aryan Myth, p. 208. Incredibly, that which outraged Nietzsche (and these historians) about Renan is overlooked - or disregarded - even today. In a l968 Englishspeaking biography on Renan, Richard Chadbourne, Ernst Renan (New York: Twaine Publishers, 1968), p. 153, writes of Renan's "valiant" attempt to base an ethic largely on Christian principles without believing in its supernatural teachings: "A simple criterion guiding Renan is his testing of Christian works: 'How much they contain of Jesus.' He is far from the scandalous simplicity of Nietzsche's 'the last Christian died on the cross.'" For further discussion on Renan's racial views, see Shmuel Almog, "The racial motif in Renan's attitude toward Judaism and the Jews," Zion 32 (l967): 175-200. 71 GM III 26: WP 128. Cf. Letter to Peter Gast, Nice, 24 November l887, in SL, p. 206. 72 TW, "Skirmishes" 1. Renan was, in fact, an ex-Catholic whom the Catholic Church denounced because of his non-divinization of Jesus. He was suspended from his professorship at the College de France in 1862, declined a position as an Assistant Director of Department of Manuscripts in the Imperial Library in 1864, in order to devote himself to his studies, but in 1871 was restored to his professorship. In 1879 he became a member of the Academy. From 1884 onward he was administrator of the College de France. Renan regarded himself as a Liberal Protestant, but like Nietzsche, had no use for institutional religion or dogmatic Christianity. Unlike Nietzsche, Renan nonetheless viewed Christianity as an exemplary spiritual discipline, Katz, Prejudice to Destruction, p. 133. 73 AC 31. 74 For a brief comparison of Renan and Duhring, see Katz, Prejudice to Destruction, pp. 265ff. 75 Renan,Jesus, pp. 125, 160ff. 76 Renan, Jesus, p 160 (ch. 7). 77 AC 32. 78 See the Preface to vol. 7: Marcus-Aurelius in Renan's multi-volume work, entitled Origins of Christianity, for a summary of his position concerning Christianity's origins with Isaiah; his negativity regarding original Israel prevails throughout his writings. Nietzsche read Renan's Origins in the winter of 1887, "with much spite and - little profit", Letter to Overbeck, Nice, 23 February 1887, in L 149, p. 261. 79 AC 17, 25, 26.

{p. 55; Chapter 3} Hubert Cancik, "MONGOLS, SEMITES AND THE PURE-BRED GREEKS": Nietzsche's handling of the racial doctrines of his time.


"Something Mongolian" - "Semitic elements"

In his "Notes to 'We philologists'", which he intended one day to become the fourth "Untimely meditation", Nietzsche had gathered material on educational reform, on the criticism of classical philology and on German culture in general.2 In addition, there are a great many notes concerning the emergence and construction of Greek culture - a process also seen here by Nietzsche as the means and paradigm for any education or culture. The Greeks are "the genius among the peoples" (p. 169 = 5[70]): "Child's nature. Credulous. Passionate. They live for the creation of genius unconsciously." Their creativity - or so Nietzsche assumed - was due to the fact that the conquerors who had fallen upon what was to become Greece had preserved their aggressive energy and had thereby founded their "cultural state" (Culturstaat) upon a "robber state" (Raubstaat).3 From the Greek model, Nietzsche derived the basic principle of his Lebensphilosophie (p. 114 = 5[188]): "We must desire that life retains its violent character, that wild power and energy be called forth. The judgement concerning the value of existence4 is the highest result of the most powerful tension in chaos." Such a chaos of races and cultures, a chaos put in order by a "master race", shows up in Nietzsche's vision of the early history of Greece. It also serves as a model for the future of Europe and its races, including the Aryans

{p. 56} and the Jews. Consequently, it is necessary and fruitful to comment in detail upon these "Notes".

Nietzsche's notes about the "original inhabitants of Greek soil" read as follows:5 Mongolian extraction with tree and snake cult. The coast garnished with a Semitic strip. Here and there Thracians. The Greeks took all these components into their blood - including all the gods and myths (in the Odysseus legends, some Mongolian). The Doric migration is a follow-up, for everything had already been gradually inundated earlier. What are "purebred Greeks"? Is it not sufficient to accept that Italians with Thracian and Semitic elements have been coupled to Greeks?

This little "racial history of Greece", as Nietzsche called it elsewhere,6 was put together from many sources. Using gross examples, Nietzsche wants to show that the "original inhabitants" were very heterogeneous. There were, in any case, no "pure-bred Greeks", but rather Mongolians, Semites and Thracians instead. All three names were intended to shock the philhellenic admirer of quiet dignity and white marble. The suggestion of a tree and snake cult set the beliefs of the Hellenes on the level of "savages". Material from ethnology and the history of religion lay ready at hand in the works of Mannhardt, Tylor, Caspari and Lubbock. Nietzsche knew these and other works on the origin of civilization and religion: he owned some, others he borrowed from the University of Basel's library, as the records of books checked out show.7 In his lectures about the "Worship of the Greeks" (GdG), he used Carl Boetticher's "Tree cults of the Hellenes" (1856).8 For the unusual combination "Tree and snake cult", Nietzsche used a title by J. Fergusson.9 Even in Homer, the patriarch of Hellenic education, Nietzsche found "some Mongolian" elements. But one had also "found", in Nietzsche's time, that a "branch of the Mongolian race" had inhabited Northern and Middle Europe during the Stone Age.10 J.A. de Gobineau even claimed that the "yellow race" had been the primitive population of Europe and that Mongolian elements were present in Greece, too. He identified eight components in the Greek population which, for their part, were composed of the three primitive elements of the human race, namely the black, the yellow and the white.11 Nietzsche's formulation that "the coast [of Greece was] garnished with a Semitic strip" seems to echo Gobineau's statement that Semites settled "along the coast of Greece".

{p. 57} In the revised form of these notes about the "original inhabitants" of Greece, Nietzsche even sees "the mainland in its interior [covered] with a race of Mongolian origin".13 Because the Greeks themselves had made numerous observations and speculations about the history of their own origins - about migration and autochthony - the new racial researchers found a rich field of activity.14 There were the Lelegians, the Karians - who were strongly mingled with the Phoenicians - and the Pelasgians, who were also even supposed to have been a Semitic people. A single pure race was nowhere to be found. The scholarly debate about how many Phoenician tribes might have settled upon Greek soil15 or about how many oriental religions might have been "imported" to Greece was still undecided in Nietzsche's time. In his lectures, Nietzsche had also rated the Phoenician influence upon Greece very high, attributing the alphabet, the polis, the goddess Aphrodite and various myths to them.16 Nietzsche's source was Franz K. Movers, whose work was the standard one at that time for the history of the Phoenicians.17 Nietzsche's colleague Heinrich Nissen went further, even speaking of a "semitising of the Hellenes".18

Thus, in the view of Nietzsche and his colleagues, the original inhabitants of Greece were already very "mixed". And the immigrants who then gradually "inundated" Greece were also no "purebred Greeks": even the conquerors had their "Thracian and Semitic elements" - remarkably enough, the very same elements as those of the original inhabitants. The Greeks - according to Nietzsche's hypothesis of their racial history - did not in fact, migrate into "Greece": their ethnic identity first originated in the land of immigration itself.19 There, they took all the garishly evoked Mongolian, Thracian and Semitic "components into their blood" - including even the "gods and myths". From this "coupling", the true Greeks emerged. Only after this can one speak of a "Greek race".

{by comparison, consider the origin of the Jews, according to the Bible. The first Jew, Abraham, was not born a Jew; he became one through entering a contract with Yahweh, called the Jewish Covenant; part of that contract was a ban on marrying non-Jews. Yahweh led the Jews to Palestine, and commanded them to slaughter all the inhabitants, so that intermarriage could not take place: guthridge.html. Is this the "early" or "First Temple" Judaism Nietzsche admired? Or had he not read those parts of the Bible?}

Such a hypothesis excluded, above all, any sort of "Indo-Germanic20 heritage" that might have been used to explain the specific cultural feats of the Greeks in Greece by reference to the biological predisposition or the cultural achievements of the Aryans alone.21 On the other hand, Nietzsche thoroughly accepted the biological discourse of his contemporaries: history was supposed to be explained through the "mixing of blood", the "coupling" of heterogeneous elements, "extraction" (in a biological sense) and, finally, "collisions" and "waves" of "immigrants". The genesis of the Greeks in Greece, where they "became Greeks", is the point of

{p. 58} his notes on the "original inhabitants". This point owes a debt to a partlcular blological (see "Nietzsche's Greeks, Jews and Europe" below) and political (see "A higher caste", below) theory of Nietzsche's.

"A higher caste"

Nietzsche's notes jump from the prehistoric "original inhabitants" to the historical period of Greece: from the conquerors came the rulers; from the original inhabitants came the slaves; from the battle of races came the battle of the "castes". Politics built itself upon the previous "racial history". Together, all of these components formed the Greek model that was supposed to mediate between antiquity and the European future. Immediately following upon his racial history of Greece, Nietzsche continued with these words:22

{quote} If one considers the enormous number of slaves on the mainland, then Greeks were only to be found sporadically. A higher caste of the Idle, the statesman, elc. Their hostilities held them in physical and intellectual tension. They had to ground their superiority upon quality - that was their spell over the masses. {endquote}

Now then, there are "Greeks". The conquerors "had taken into their blood", consumed and digested the Semitic, Mongolian and Thracian components.23 Something new had come into existence. Yet the "wild energy" through which the conquerors had taken possession of the land and its inhabitants remained preserved up into the earlier perlod of antiquity - or so Nietzsche thought. It was, indeed essential in order to keep the "enormous number of slaves" suppressed. This same energy drove the Greeks both to rivalry with each other and to the highest cultural achievements:24 "The intellectual culture of Greece [was] an aberration of the tremendous political drive toward distinction." The highest achievements of culture were necessary; they were not some lovely but superficial decoration. They engendered the cohesion of the higher caste of the "idle" - the political class and the creators of culture: in the musical and the athletlc contests, aggression was channelled and sublimated.25 Moreover, the supreme achievements of culture cast a spell over the "masses", who obviously had to care for each one of those belonging to the "Idle", whose rule, in this manner, was justified aesthetically. Consequently, Nietzsche believed that he had proven through

{p. 59} historical methods that the wild power and energy belonging to a conquering people has to be "bred great" (groB gezuchtet), a cultivation process by which such achievements as those the Greeks once produced would also be brought forth in Europe in the future.26 Neither peace, luxury, socialism, the ideal political state, welfare, nor short-term educational reform are preconditions for the engendering of genius - whether of a people or of an individual; rather, genius should arise from conditions "as malicious and ruthless" as those in nature itself:27 "Mistreat people - drive them to their limits" ("MiBhandelt die Menschen, treibt sie zum AuBersten").

Nietzsche's considerations about race and caste as well as rule and culture for the Greeks were aimed at his present. "The Greeks", he thought, "believed in differences among the races". Nietzsche approvingly recalled Schopenhauer's opinion that slaves were a different species, and in addition, he cited the image of a winged animal in contrast to that of an unmoving shellfish.78 In such a generalization as this one, the statement is incorrect, and in a more narrowly defined sense, it is racist. Neither the study of the origin of populations - their tribes, dialects and customs (through such fields as anthropology, ethnology and folklore) - nor the analysis and critical evaluation of differences in language, law and religion, on the one hand, and of peoples and cultures on the other hand, constitutes racism; however, the political use of these findings for generating and propagating narcissistic self-images, destructive caricatures of enemies and stereotypes that raise fear and dlsgust does constitute racism {but the author should also note Jewish narcissism}. Accordingly, the following statements by Nietzsche are to be characterized as racist:29

1 "The new problem: whether or not educating[!] a part of humanity to a higher race must come at the cost of the rest. Breeding ..." (1881).

2 "We would as little choose 'early Christians' as Polish Jews to associate with us: not that one would need to have even a single [i.e., rational] objection to them. ... Both of them simply do not smell good."

Nietzsche tested his racial teachings within the framework of classical studies. The aphoristic formulation that he gave to his "Notes" on the original population of Greece in September 1876 forms a connection to the racial teachings of his critical writings.30 In his "Plowshare", Nictzsche excluded the Doric migration and avoided

{p. 60} the word "caste" as well as such peculiarities as the tree and snake cult, or the Mongolian elements in the Odyssey or the Italians who had become Greeks. Purified of offensive, concrete, verifiable details, a more refined, polished, dashing aphorism emerged, one that suggested, in more pleasing language, the necessary connection of racial differences to the rule of "higher beings" -- thus "the idle, the political class, etc." are now called - and to cultural superiority.


Inheritance of acquired characteristics

Not only a political but also a biological theory stood behind Nietzsche's notes on the racial history of Greece. His thoroughly legitimate doubts about an autochthonous people, a pure origin or an Indo-European heritage found support, for their part, in biological hypotheses and the application of these to history. He writes:31

{quote} It is a completely unclear concept to talk about Greeks who do not yet live in Greece. The typical Greek is much less the result of a predisposition than of the adapted institutions - and also among other things, of the adopted language. {endquote}

Once that "typical Greek" has been created, however, it must be kept "pure", best of all through a rigid, steep hierarchy of "castes".32 In any case, the "purity" of the race is also a positive, basic concept of biology for Nietzsche. Nietzsche constructed a little racial history of ancient Europe upon concepts he had borrowed from biology.33 "Blood mixing", skull shape and skin and hair color are the main terms of his anthropology. Nietzsche coupled the biological to social characterlstics and to moral values: the blond-haired is better than the black-haired, and the short-haired is worse than the long-skulled. Some fearless etymologies suggested by the erstwhile philologist make this chapter from the Genealogy of Morals into a prize exhibit of philo-Aryan prose34 because for Nietzsche, the long-skulled blond - the good, noble, pure conqueror - was the Aryan, of course: they were the master race in Europe. Nietzsche's little racial history of ancient Europe aimed at the present. In the social and political movements of the Democrats, the

{p. 61} Anarchists and the Socialists of his time, he saw, namely, the instincts of the "pre-Aryan population" breaking through again. Nietzsche related these political programs explicitly to biology. He feared that "the conquering and master race - that of the Aryans - is also being defeated physiologically".35 According to Nietzsche, the Jews had begun this slave revolt:36 they led the slaves - the mob, the herd - to this victory over the aristocracy. This victory meant "blood poisoning", "intoxication" - this pastor's son and classical philologist loved to adorn himself with medical jargon. Nietzsche identified the reason for the poisoning:37 "It [i.e., the victory] had mingled the races promiscuously." The pre-Aryan population was thus in league with the Jews and against the Italians, the Greeks, the Celts, the Germans - and generally speaking, all Aryans everywhere. The biological - even physiological - claim, the rejection of the theories of inheritance and the demand for the purity of the ruling castes forced Nietzsche to a biological hypothesis that presupposed the inheritance of acquired characteristics. Nietzsche writes:38 "No reflection is so important as that upon the inheritance of characteristics."39 The "character of the Greeks" is "acquired"; nothing is "given" to them. In 1881, Nietzsche published a general draft of his racial ideas under the title "The becoming-pure of a race".40 What he had previously scattered about in notes concerning classical studies and in various other hints is here summarized in twenty-five lines of print covering five points: 1 The races are not originally pure but, at best, become pure in the course of history. 2 The crossing of races simultaneously means the crossing of cultures: crossing leads to "disharmony" in bodily form, in custom and in morality. 3 The process of purification occurs through "adapting, imbibing, [and] excreting" foreign elements. 4 The result of purification is a stronger and more beautiful organism. 5 The Greeks are "the model of a race and culture that had become pure".

All historical details have now been suppressed. The blueprint of Nietzsche's thinking, however, which he had already structured in his early classical notes, has here become undisguisably clear. We can

{p. 62} connect every single "note" with this blueprint, as we will shortly see in what follows. Those who were to become Greeks imbibed the Mongolian, Semitlic and Thracian elements, excreting what could not be assimilated. After this process, these elements were no longer specific components of the now-existent Greek race, for it was now a new race, stronger and more beautiful than any single, previous one. Nletzsche's metaphorical language suggests the intake, digestion and excretion of food occurring in an organism. This image of a "battle among the disharmonious characteristics" within impure organisms reminds one of the "battle of the parts within an organism", as Wllhelm Roux, the founder of developmental mechanics,41 had described it. Nietzsche had already copied down passages from Roux's major work in the year it had appeared - 1881.42 The significance of this text for Nietzsche has been shown by W. MullerLauter.43 The "model" for the breeding of a European ruling caste was the Greeks:44 "it is to be hoped that a pure European race and culture will also one day succeed [in coming into being]." In such a race and culture - as the model prepared by Nietzsche has instructed us - the foreign elements (those bred in) will be imbibed for digestion or excretion.

Nietzsche's sources

Nietzsche drew his biological and medical concepts, methods and materlals from many different sources. Some clues are provided by the authors he himself named, others by the reading lists he jotted down in his notebooks, still others from the University of Basel's book-loan lists of books he and his friends checked out and the remainder, finally, by the books he kept in his library.45 Nietzsche used physiologlcal texts as well as popularized scientific writings but also anonymous treatises with striking titles: Die Artstokratie des Geistes als Losung der sozialen Frage: Ein GrundriB der naturlichen und vernunfttgen Zuchtwahl in der Menschheit (The Aristocracy of Intellect as the Solution to the Social Question: An Outline for the Natural and Reasonable Selective Breeding of Humanity) (Anon., Lelpzlg, n.d.). Nietzsche mentions Thomas Robert Malthus and Jean Baptlste Lamarck,46 Rudolph Virchow,47 Wilhelm Roux and the founder of Soclal Darwinism, Herbert Spencer, from whom he mav possibly have learned the term "cull out" (German translation:

{p. 63} Ausmerze).48 Spencer had transferred theorems from biological evolution to the historical process. He complained that a policy of social reform hindered "natural selection". For this reason, Nietzsche advised, one must "eliminate the continuance and effectiveness" of bad, sick and uneducated people.49 From Sir Francis Galton, one of the original founders of eugenics, he took over the formula of "hereditary genius", which Galton had used in his study of the families of criminals.50 He had already as a student informed himself about Charles Darwin's theories by reading F. Albert Lange's History of Materialism.51 In the scholarship upon Nietzsche, it is debated as to whether he is to be understood as a Darwinist or an anti-Darwinist. Werner Stegmaier, who has demonstrated the minor significanee of anti-Darwinian passages in Nietzsehe's later writings, considers him a convinced Darwinian "in every phase of his work".52

Nietzsehe's utteranees about acquired character, the purity of races, the inheritance of characteristies, the degeneracy of halfbreeds53 and the cultivation of drives over long periods of time54 could - for this branch - suggest an unorthodox (Neo-)Lamarckianism. Still, it is unclear whether or not Nietzsche would have recognized any difference between the Lamarckian and the Darwinian ideas within Darwin's own writings. The following formulation - gained with help from Wilhelm Roux's formulation of his teachings on the inheritance of acquired characteristics and habits - is typical of Nietzsche:55 "Thus are peoples who have grown old more explicit about what is typical of them, and it is clearer to recognize [it then] than in the prime of their youth."56

By Nietzsche's time, the knowledge, terminology and manner of formulating questions that were characteristic of the fields of demographics, biology and medicine had long entered into the various branches of the humanities, even if to various degrees. Comparative linguistics had already recognized the connections among the IndoEuropean languages stretching from Asia all the way to the Celtic north-west of Europe. The overhasty connection made between a people and a language led to the search for the original home of the Aryans. Comparative mythology57 found the remnants of a prehistoric religion common to all of the Aryan peoples. As early as 1868, Nietzsche became acquainted with the philosopher, all-round publicist and anti-Semite Eugen Duhring.58 In 1875, he wrote down passages from Duhring's work On the Value of Life (1865), adding his own, critical remarks.59 Duhring published in a verbose, self-conscious and vulgar manner about religious ersatz in modern

{p. 64} culture, about the supposed necessary correspondence of race character and religion, about whether or not Jesus had been a fullblooded Jew and about whether or not Christianity carried features of the "Jewish race" and therefore posed the frightening danger of Judaizing the various European peoples.60 Nietzsche made great efforts to distance himself from his threatening proximity to this phllosophizing university lecturer.

In historical scholarship as well - and even in classical philology - racist teachings had penetrated.61 Within Nietzsche's racial teachings, Jews and Aryans had a special position. In his first monograph (1872), Nietzsche had already arrayed the "Aryan character" against the Semitic one, Prometheus against Eve, the creative man against the lying woman, the tragic wantonness in battle for higher culture against lascivious sin.62 This argumentative structure is still present in The Antichrist (1888): against the philhellenic hyperboreans and what Nietzsche called "Aryan humanity" stood denatured Judaism and Judaism "raised to the second power", Christianity.63 The Jews - as Nietzsche had indicated with the Eve myth - are not creative in contrast to the Aryan peoples, they are mere "intermediaries", merchants: "they invent nothing." Even their law is from the Codex of Manu - copied from an "absolutely Aryan creation".64

One typical product of this kind of racial history is the "Contribution to historical anthropology" by Theodor Poesche, in which he wished to treat only a single race but nevertheless bind together natural and cultural history. The unity of this field was to be established through the concept of "race". Poesche defined this physiologically, through the size and form of the skull and through the color of the skin and hair, rather than linguistically, for language would be transmissible from one group to another. On the other hand, Poesche believed in an "original concordance of physical constitutlon and language": "the blond peoples speak Indo-Germanic."65 Greeks and Romans, on the one hand, and Persians and Indians, on the other hand, were already a mixed people - completely homogeneous peoples had not existed for thousands of years.66 His history covered human development from the beginning up to his present day. The Aryan settling of both Americas, of Siberia and of the Russian part of America was forming the concluding high point of this process. The last sentence of this work praised the Aryans as "the Master race of the earth". Nietzsche made the breeding of a European master race somewhat more difficult.

{p. 65} Breeding a pure European race

"Imbibed and absorbed by Europe"

Nietzsche only grudgingly accepted the Aryan myth, for it competed with his Hellenic myth. He found surprising the fact that Christianity could have forced a Semitic religion upon the Indo-Germans.67 For this reason, he fought both Judaism and Christianity, and he created for himself a pagan, Indo-Germanic alternative with his new, Hellenic Dionysos and the Iranian Zarathustra. He finished this battle in autumn of 1888 with his "A curse on Christianity".68 and his "War to the death against Christianity".69

The Christian was "only a Jew of a 'freer' confession of faith" - Christians and Jews were "related, racially related",70 and Christianity was a form of Judaism raised "yet one time" higher through negation.71 Nietzsche wrote:72

{quote} Christianity is to be understood entirely in terms of the soil from which is grew - it is not a countermovement to the Jewish instinct; it is the successor itself, a further step in its [i.e., the Jewish instinct's] frightening logic. {endquote}

Nietzsche's fight against the "denaturalization of natural values",73 his "transvaluation of all values" was directed against Jews and Christians. Because Nietzsche argued against both, Christian antiSemitism was especially offensive for him. The Jews, Nietzsche maintained, were nevertheless guilty:74 They had "made humanity into something so false that, still today, a Christian can feel antiSemitic without understanding himself as the last stage of Judaism".

The Antichrist was Nietzsche's last word on Judaism which he himself intended to be published. It is precisely with respect to supposed or truly "positive" utterances on Jews and Judaism that this fact should never be forgotten.75

A short essay (section 251) in Nietzsche's "Philosophy of the Future" - Beyond Good and Evil (1885/6) - belongs to the "positive" parts. Here, "the breeding of a new caste to rule over Europe" definitely a current "European problem" according to Nietzsche is discussed. The breeding of this caste follows the "Greek model": the foreign elements are "imbibed" and either assimilated or "excreted" - thus does a "pure European race and culture come into being". With the Jews, however, Germany was going to have difficulty, for Germany had "amply enough Jews" (so wrote

{p. 66} Nietzsche in 1885/6): "that the German stomach, the German blood, is having difficulty (and for a long time yet will continue to have difficulty) finishing even this quantity of 'Jews'." Other European countries had finished with the Jews "because of a more strenuous digestion"; in Germany, however, there were simply too many. Nietzsche demanded what all anti-Semites demanded at that time: "Allow no more Jews in! And, especially, close the gates to the east (including the one between Germany and Austria!" Nietzsche praised the Jews so much that he appeared to confirm the fears of anti-Semites about Jews striving to rule the world. He writes:76 "That the Jews, if they wished ... could already have the predominance - yes, literally the dominion over Europe - is certain, it is equally certain, however, that they are not working upon this or making plans." Nietzsche speculated, though, that the vulgar antiSemites might provoke the Jews into seizing "power over Europe" for themselves. For anti-Semitism itself, Nietzsche had complete understanding; he was simply - like "all careful and judicious people" - against the "dangerous extravagance" of this feeling,77 "especially against the tasteless and scandalous expression of this extravagant feeling". Nietzsche had a measured and tasteful manner of expressing this "feeling". And his solution to the problem was also mild: the Jews are to be bred in. They even desire it themselves, "to be in Europe, to be imbibed and absorbed". As for the "antiSemitic complainers", those who might hinder this gentle final solution with their radical words, Nietzsche wanted to have them expelled from the country. And then, he thought, one could - "with great care" and "with selectivity" - cross an intelligent Jewish woman with an "aristocratic officer from the Mark" (i.e., a Prussian aristocratic officer).

In this manner, one could "breed in" some intellect to the "already strongly molded character of the new Teutonic". The valuable elements of Judaism, which Nietzsche was able to praise generously in this context, would be absorbed and assimilated in the new Europe; whatever disturbed would be "excreted". In this manner, the new European race would be purified and a new caste ruling over Europe cultivated. The "Greek model" that Nietzsche had developed in his classical studies was proving its value for planning the racial, cultural and political future of Europe. The programmatic anti-Semitism was to be surpassed through Nietzsche's tasteful solution of the problem, precisely that solution acceptable to an intellectual aristocracy.

{There's a problem here, because Nietzsche seems to acknowledge that the Jews ARE the intellectual aristocracy: intelect.html; on that basis, their interbreeding might, on the basis of Nietzsche's eugenics, be a downgrading. At this point, I must object that intellectuals are not "bred"; they are "reared" - by other intellectuals; and if that cultural transmission is broken, intellectuals can even "die out". When one considers the diet that "Jewish Hollywood" is feeding young people, this is a real risk. I myself am an intellectual, yet my parents and grandparents were not, and my children are not - to my despair (worst of all, they don't understand or appreciate me!). I submit that Jewish cultivation of intellect is cultural, not racial. Further, even if Jews are more intellectual, to what use do they put that intellect? Much Jewish writing in the Social Sciences consists of apologias for their own cause; if they are dominant, that is in part because of Jewish wealth, a millenial eschatology driving them on, narcissism, and, I might say, deception. Having said that, I agree on the need to foster intellect, on a humanity-wide basis. On a related point: at my school, despite the best efforts of teachers, an anti-intellectual culture was dominant among the students, intimidating the intellectual children. If Jews have experienced this, on account of their own intellectual qualities, then they deserve the sympathy of others who have experienced it too; however, covertness and attempts to rule non-Jews impede that sympathy. Even Noam Chomsky and Norman Finkelstein have been on the receiving end of "Jewish intellect".}

{p. 67} A tasteful gentle anti-Semitism

Among those belonging to the "careful and judicious" category of the ones who could support a gentle solution were Schopenhauer and Wagner. Nietzsche had known Schopenhauer's "theory of inheritance" ever since his student days.78 Nietzsche wanted to sharpen the social and political distinctions between Greeks and barbarians, lords and serfs, geniuses and breadwinners by identifying the races to which people belonged. For this, he cited Schopenhauer, who had been surprised that "nature had not chosen to invent two separate species".79 On the other hand, Schopenhauer had wanted "to solve in the gentlest way in the world" the Jewish question - through marrying them to Christians.80 Wagner had, at the close of his early essay "Judaism in music", challenged the Jews to become human beings. To do this, they would have to stop being Jews {like Marx?} and destroy themselves:

{quote} Participate without restraint in this self-destroying, bloody battle, and we will be one and indivisible! But consider- you have only one salvation from the curse remaining upon you, the salvation provided for Ahasver - destruction! {endquote}

Despite this bloody language, Wagner had later rejected the vulgar, primitive anti-Semitism that was partially even inspired by motives of social criticism. Wagner did not support the anti-Semitic petition to the Kaiser organized by Bernhard Forster, Max Liebermann von Sonnenberg, Ernst Henrici and others.82 In this elevated, fine, tasteful, gentle anti-Semitism, a thematic communality between Wagner and Nietzsche reveals itself, one going deeper than any disagreement in other areas, whether personal, musical or religious.

{p. 69; footnotes for Ch. 3} NOTES

1 Translation from German by Horace Jeffrey Hodges (Berkeley/ Tubingen). I am very indebted to Hubert Treiber (Hanover) for kindly indicating and commenting on many sources Nietzsche might have consulted: this paper owes much to his stimulating and competent criticism. 2 The "Notizen zu 'Wir Philologen'" (WPh) are to be found in manuscript UB II 8; they were written in 1875. Our quotations follow the pagination of the archives in the manuscript; when necessary, the numbering of the edition by M. Montinari in KGW IV, resp. KSA, vol. 8 has been added. 3 GM I 5. For the concepts of "cultural state/robber state', cf. H. Cancik and H. Cancik-Lindemaier, "Das Thema 'Religion und Kultur' bei Friedrich Nietzsche und Franz Overbeck", in D. Thofern, S. Gabbani and W. Vosse (eds), Rationalitat im Diskurs: Rudolf Wolfgang Muller zum 60. Geburtstag (Marburg: Diagonal, 1994) pp. 49-67. 4 The formula "value of life" was coined by Eugen Duhring, whom Nietzsche read in 1875; there are extracts with critical annotations in UB III 1 = KSA vol. 8, pp. I3lff. 5 UB II 8, p. 110 = KSA p. 96: 5[198]. 6 Encyc 21 (KGW II 3, pp. 427ff.). 7 Cf. "Nietzsche's sources", below, Otto Caspari, Die Urgeschichte der Menschheit: Mit Ruchsicht auf die naturkliche Entwickelung des fruhesten Geisteslebens, 2nd edn (Leipzig: Brockhaus, 1877), p. 59; John Lubbock, Die Entstehung der Zivilisation und der Ur7ustand des Menschengeschlechtes (Jena: Castenoble, 1875), pp. 222f., 240; Edward Tylor, Die Anfange der Cultur: Untersuchungen uber die Entwicklung der Mythologie, Philosophie, Religion, Kunst und Sitte (Leipzig: Winter, 1873) II, pp. 218ff., cf. W. Mannhardt, Wald- und Feldculte: Erster Theil: Baumcultus der Germanen und ihrer Nachbarstamme (Berlin, 1875). 8 The conference entitled GdG (winter term 1875/6) is in GA 19, pp. 1-124 (not complete). Boetticher is used in MS N I 6, p. 72 (summer 1875; cf. GdG, pp. 36f., 69f., 73f., et al. 9 James Fergusson, Tree and Serpent Worship (London: W.H. Allen & Co., 1868), used by Lubbock, Die Entsehung derZivilisation, pp. 187ff.; Nietzsche quotes Fergusson in GdG, pp. 34f. Cf. Tylor, Anfange, pp. 222ff.: tree worship in Siberia. 10 Cf. Das Ausland, 1873, pp. 270ff.: "Prof. Friedrich Muller's anthropological researches" (Prof. Friedrich Muller's ethnologische Forschungen), esp. p. 310: "The race of the Hyperboreans"; "Original home of the so-called Mongolian or better High-Asiatic race".

{p. 70} 11 M.A. de Gobineau, Essai sur l'inegalite des races humaines (Paris: Didot vols. 1-2 1853, vols. 3 4 1855). For the dissemination of the yellow race see vol. 3, p. 17; cf. the fantastic etymologies, ibid., p. 43. For different racial elements in the population of Greece see vol. 2, p. 416. "La gloire de la Grece fut l'oeuvre de la fraction ariane, alliee au sang semitique tandls que la grande preponderance exterieure de ce pays resulta de l'action des populations quelque peu mongolisees du nord." Cf. the list of elght components, ibid., pp. 421f. 12 Gobineau, Essai, vol. 1, p. 393: "le long du litoral de la Grece." Cf. E.J. Young, Cob~neau und der Rasstsrnus, (Meisenheim am Glan. 1968). 13 There IS a new verslon of WPh 3[198] in "Die Pflugschar" 143 (KSA vol. 14 One classical passage is Thucydides 1, 2-3; cf. the annotations by Wahrmund, cf. Thucydides 1, 8 (the Carians); 2, 2 (the Thracians). 15 Ernst Curtius, Dte Ionier vor der ionischen Wanderung (Berlin: Hertz, 1855), p. 50. 16 Encyc, pp. 428f., 410; UB 118, p. 168 = 5[65], GdG, pp. 22f. 17 Franz Karl Movers, Die Phonizier (Bonn. Weber, 1841) 18 H Nissen, "Uber Tempelorientierung", Rheinisches Museum 28 (1873): 19 It is impossible to present here the contemporary theories upon a common prehistory of the Greco-Italians and upon the various immigrations to Greece; but, see Theodor Poesche, Die Aner: Ein Beitrag zur htstortschen Anthropologte (Jena: Costenoble, 1878), pp. 155ff., p. 162: "the Greeks, at any rate, bear a frequent Semitic element within themselves"; pp. 181f.: "black, roundheaded, ugly Pre-Aryans in Europe" ("Mongoloids"); pp. 184ff.; p. 186: "Italy in the earliest times totally occupied by a dark population." 20 Although the normal translation for indogermanisch would be "Indo-European", the various writers cited in this article in fact stressed the Germanic part of the term, and the translation used here reflects this stress. 21 Cf. UBI18,p.206=2[5]. 22 UB 118, p. 206 = 5[199]. 23 For this imagery, see "Nietzsche's sources", below 24 UB118,p. 118=5[179]. 25 Cf. e.g. the piece from December 1872 on: "Homer's Wettkampf" (not published by Nietzsche): KSA vol. 1, pp. 783-92 26 UBI18, p.116 and 11 4 = 5[185] and [188] 27 UB 118, p. 112 = 5j 191] and [194] 28 UB 118, p. 112 = 5[72] and [73]. 29 (1) KSA vol. 9, p. 577 12[10], (2) AC 46 (KSA vol. 6, p. 223) 30 "Die Pflugschar" 143 (KSA vol. 8, p. 327). It is proved by the version of "Pflugschar" that the passages numbered 5[198] and [199] in KGW are not separated "tragments" but rather a unity. 31 UBII 8, p.206=2[5]. 32 Friedrich Nietzsche, "Der griechische Staat" (1872): KSA vol. 1, p. 764-77, here p. 775; cf. B. von Reibnitz, "Nietzsches 'Griechischer Staat' und das Deutsche ~alserreich'', Der alt~prachliche Unterru-ht 30 (3)

{p. 71} (1987): 76-89. Nietzsche evidently did not care that there never had been a caste system in Greece; he combined what seemed useful to him. In his later work, the main source was L. Jacolliot, Les Legislateurs religieux: Manou-Molse-Mahomet (Paris, 1876), see his extracts in KSA vol. 13, p. 284 and, e.g., GD (KSA vol. 6, pp. 100f ) and AC 57. Nietzsche had this completely unreliable book in his library, and he should have recognized its dubious nature: cf. A. Etter, "Nietzsche und das Gesetzbuch des Manu, "Nietzsche-Studien 16 (1987): 340-52 and Vasudha Dalmia-Luderitz, "Die Aneignung der Vedischen Vergangenhelt: Aspekte der fruhen deutschen Indien-Forschung", Zeitschrtftfur Kulturaustausch 37 (3) (1987): 434 43. Cf., further, L. Dumont, "Caste, raclsme et stratification", Cahiers lnternationaux de Sociologie 29 (1960): 91ff. 33 GM 15 (1887). Note that Nietzsche had read Tocqueville - see his letter to Overbeck, 23 February 1887. 34 Some examples: esthlos ("noble") to einai("to be"), malus ("bad") to melas ("black"). 35 GM I 5. 37 GM I 9 For the mixture of races considered as an evil, cf. JGB 208, 200. 38 KSA vol. 8, p. 301: 17 [28]. 39 VM 219. 41 Wilhelm Roux, Der Kampf der Teile im Organismus: Ein Beitrag zur Ver?Jollstandigung der mechanischen Z~eckma~tgkettslehre (Lelpzlg, 1881), BN. 42 KSA vol. 9, pp. 487f.: 11[130]. 43 W. Muller-Lauter, "Der Organismus als innerer Kampf. Der EmfluB von Wilhelm Roux auf Friedrich Nietzsche", Nietzsche-Studten 7 (1978): 189-223; cf. "Nietzsche's sources", below. 44 JGB 251 (last sentence) and M IV 272 (last sentence). 45 Max Oehler, Nietzsches Bibliothek (Weimar, 1942). The list compiled by Oehler is unreliable, probably not even complete. There is no information in Oehler as to when Nietzsche first came to possess the books indicated or as to which copies might possibly have been supphed later. As to the lists of Romundt's book loans, cf. H. Treiber, "Wahlverwandschaften zwisclten Nietzsches Idee eines 'Klosters fur frelere Geister' und Webers Idealtypus der puritanischen Sekte", NietzscheStudien, 21 (1992): 344; "Zur Genealogle einer 'science posltlve de la morale en Allemagne"', ibid. 22 (1993): 196ff.; "Zur 'Loglk des Traumes bei Nietzsche", ibid. 23, (1994): 35ff. 46 Malthus: KSA vol. 6, p. 120; vol. 8, pp. 167ff; FW 1199 (KSA vol. 3, p. 454); cf. KSA vol. 9, p. 397; vol. 11, p. 442. 47 Cf. GM 15 (KSA vol. 3, p. 263). 48 H. Spencer, Die Thatsachen der Ethik, tr. B. Vetter (Stuttgart, 1879), BN, cf. KSA vol. 9, p. 10 (1880). 49 KSA vol. 9, p. 10 (1880); cf. ibid., pp. 27t., 454t. 50 Letter to Strindberg, 8 December 1888.; cf. Ietter to Overbeck, 4 July 1888. Ct. Marie Louise Haase, "Friedrich Nietzsche hest I rancls Galton", Nietzsche-Studien, 18 (1889): 633ff. 51 Letter to Gersdorff, 16 I ebruary 1868; cf. UB 17 (KSA vol. I, pp. 1 94tt.);

{p. 72} KSA vol. 7, p. 267 (l870/1-fall 1872): "Bell quoted by Darwin upon the expression of emotions (concernmg the genesis of languagel) " 52 W. Stegmaier, "Darwin, Darwinismus, Nietzsche", Nietzsche-Studien 53 JCB 208 (KSA vol. 5, pp. 138). Cf. Peosche, Arier, p. 10 concerning the sterlhty of mlxtures: a mlxed race can persist only "if supplied with fresh blood". Cf. JGB 200: "The man belonging to an epoch of dissolution whlch mixes up the races". 54 KSA vol. 9, 11[130]. 55 KSA vol. 10, p. 273: 7[90] (summer 1883); from Wilhelm Roux, Der Kampf der Te/le tm Organismus: kin Beitrag zur Vervollstandigung der mechantschen ZweckmaJ~igkeitslehre (Leipzig: Engelmann, 1881), pp. 56 Cf. H. Ottmann, Philosophie und Politik bei Nietzsche (Berlin and New York: de Gruyter, 1987), pp. 245ff., 262ff. 57 Encyc, KGW II 3, p. 389, 397, 410ff. (for Creuzer, O. Muller, Max Muller, A. Kuhn, et al.). 58 Letter to Gersdorft, 16 February 1868 59 KSA vol. 8, pp. 129, 131-81. 60 These keywords come from E. Duhring, Der Ersatz der Religion durch Vollkommeneres und die Ausscheidung alles Judaerthums durch den modernen Volkergetst (Berlin, 1897). Cf. Aldo Venturelli, "Asketismus und Wllle zur Macht, Nietzsches Auseinandersetzung mit Eugen Duhrmg, Ntetzsche-Studten 15 (1986): 107-39. 61 Cf. e g. Ietter to T. Fritsch, 29 March 1887, where Adolf Wahrmund is mentloned, whose translation of Thucydides Nietzsche used, cf. A Wahrmund, Das Gesete des Nomadentums und die heutige Judenherrschaft (March, 1 887). 62 CT 9. In German, the word Frevel ("wantonness") is masculine in gender; the word Sunde ("sin") is feminine. For the theme "Aryans and Semites" in general, cf. M. Olender, Les Langues du paradis: Aryens et Semttes: un couple providential, Paris: Gallimard, 1989. 63 Cf. GD The 'correctors' of mankind" KSA vol. 12, p. 501 64 Letter to Koselitz, 31 May 1888, cf. n. 31. 65 Poesche, Aner, pp. 4, 7f.; language: p. 41 66 Ibid. VII: "The Aryan half-breeds" 67 KSA vol. 9, pp. 21f. 68 Subtitle of The Antichnst, 1888. 69 KSA vol. 6, p. 254. 70 A C 44. 71 AC 27: "the small rebellious movement, which is baptised in the name of Jesus of Nazareth, is the Jewish instinct once more." Cf. H. Cancik and H. Cancik-Lmdemaier, "Philhellenisine et antisemitisme en Allemagne: le cas Nietzsche", in D. Bourel and J. Le Rider (eds), De t s-Marta a Jerusalem. Ntetzsche et le judaisme - les intellectuals jutfs et Ntetzsche (Paris: Editions du Cerf, 1991) and H. Cancik, "'Judentum in Zwetter Potenz"': Em Beitrag zur Interpretation von Friedrich Nietzsche, 'Der Antlchrist', in "Mit unserer Macht ist nichts getan " Festschrift ~eter Schellong (Frankfurt am Main: Haag & Herchen Verlag, 1993).

{p. 73} 72 AC24. 73 AC25. 74 A C 24. 75 In the enigmatic utterances Nietzsche sent to several persons after his breakdown the anti-Semites to be shot appear among Dionysus and Ariadne, the crucified, the pope, Bismarck, the Hohenzollern etc.; see KSB 8, pp. 570-79. 76 JGB251;cf.M205(KSAvol.3, p. 182): "They [i.e., the Jews] themselves know best that they cannot think of conquering Europe and of whatsoever an act of violence: they know, however, that someday Europe might fall into their hands like a fully ripe fruit." Cf. KSA vol. 10, p. 251 (1883): "Thus a temporary reign of the Jews is the only means to ennoble them." 77 By asking moderation in the expression of anti-Semitism, which he considers as principally justified, Nietzsche takes the same posltlon as the later Wagner and Wolzogen. The anti-capitalist and anti-bourgeois potential of anti-Semitism was then already frightening the "educated middle class". That is why they tried to channel it. 78 Letter to E. Rohde, 8 October 1868. 79 UB 118, p. 112 = 5[72]. 80 Cf. Schopenhauer, Parerga und Paralipomena 11 132. For the reception of Schopenhauer in German anti-Semitism, cf. Maria Groener, Schopenhauer und die Juden, (Munich: Deutscher Volksverlag, n.d., about 1920); Micha Brumlik (1991), "Das Judentum in der Philosophle Schopenhauers", in Marcel Markus, et al. (eds), Israel und die Kirche heute: 81 R. Wagner, "Das Judentum in der Musik", Neue Zeitschrift fur Musik 19-20 (1850): 101-12; new edition with commentary by Tibor Kneif (Munich, 1975), the quotation is on p. 77. 82 Cf. Paul W. Massing (German edn, 1959), Vorgeschichte des politischen Antisemitismus (American edn, 1949), Ch. 3: "Conservative state and social demagogy". 83 KSA vol. 9, pp. 21-3: 1[73]. 84 Cf. HL 10 (KSA vol. 1, p. 333). 85 Further evidence in Cancik and Cancik-Lindemaier, "Philhellenisme". 86 KSA vol. 7, p. 83.

{p. 101; Chapter 5} Josef Simoy, NIETZSCHE ON JUDAISM AND EUROPE, Translated by John Stanley

{p. 107} According to Nietzsche, the "artistes" among the philosophers and not the moralists - are grateful to the Jews. This is the statement that best describes his orientation to the Jews. But, as is common knowledge, one does not find only gratitude towards the Jews in Nietzsche's writings. The capacity "to assert oneself in spite of the worst conditions (better, perhaps, than under favorable conditions)," leads to a resentment against those who have a better life. In order to live under these conditions, the disadvantaged group must be more cunning than the nobility, for they must defend their values against this appearance, i.e., they defend themselves "intellectually" (geistig). Thus, the source of their power is to be found precisely in this resistant resentment. Whereas the resentment of the "good" nobility exhausts itself "in an immediate reaction," the Jews must "retain" their resentful energy without being able to communicate their self-certitude concerning their "intellectual" superiority to outsiders. Resentment is a self-certitude that has been "internalized"; it is the consciousness of a superiority over all circumstance, a superiority which nevertheless has a particular basis. This consciousness is unarticulable and - because it never gains general recognition - "sublime." Anyone who attempts to experience this particularity as an outsider inevitably finds that he has no access to this intellectual spirit. Rather, the experience that one has here is of the other, of an alienating way of behaving that calls forth a counterresentment. Even Nietzsche understood that he himself was not free of resentment: that would contradict his own concept of understanding. The eternal return of the same can be seen as the affirmation of everything above and beyond all time. When viewed in this light, "this most difficult thought" has "presumptions that also must be true when the thought itself is true."

{p. 117; Chapter 6} Yirmiyahu Yovel, The structure of an ambivalence

{p. 118} The process which had started with Socrates, Moses and Jesus, and which Hegel saw as creating truth, civilization, spirit and even God himself (the Absolute) was to Nietzsche a story of decadence and degeneration. Nietzsche attributed this decadence to two main sources - rationalistic metaphysics and Christianity: the first stemming from the Greeks {who acquired it from India}, the second from the ancient Jews. He therefore needed an interpretation of Judaism (and also of Socratism as offered in the Birth of Tragedy) in order to expose and upset the decadent culture of the present. Given these projects, Hegel had seen the merit of ancient Judaism in its discovery - which led to Christianity - that God was spirit and that spirit is higher than nature whereas for Nietzsche this was the great falsification which the ancient Jewish priests had brought about. However, as my analysis shows, Nietzsche did not recognize a single, permanent Jewish essence. He distinguished three different modes or phases in Judaism and expressed admiration for two of them: for biblical Judaism, and for the Jews of the latter Diaspora. His harsh critique pours exclusively on the middle phase, the second-temple "priestly" Judaism (as he calls it) which had started the "slave revolution" in morality, namely, Christianity. Nietzsche's true target is Christianity: so much so that often he reads the ideas and even the phrases of the New Testament directly into what he derogates under the name of Judaism {Yet we only know of "First Temple" Judaism via Ezra and other editors, composers of the Torah under Persian influence; and Ezra et. al. already present the view "that God was spirit and that spirit is higher than nature", which Nietzsdche objects to.}

{p. 119} As for modern anti-Semitism, Nietzsche repudiates it with the same passion he reserves for the proto-Christian Jewish "priests" - and for similar reasons. These two human types, apparently so opposed to each other - the anti-Semite and the Jewish priest - are actually genealogical cousins: they share the same deep-psychological pattern of ressentiment which Nietzsche's philosophy diagnoses at the basis of human meanness and degeneration.


Nietzsche's attack on ancient ("priestly") Judaism is as fierce and uncompromising as his assault on anti-Semitism. The Jewish priests have spread the spurious ideas of a "moral world order", sin, guilt punishment, repentance, pity and the love of the neighbor. Thereby they falsified all natural values. The meek and the weak are the good who deserve salvation; all men are equal in their duties towards a transcendent God and the values of love and mercy He demands (Nietzsche thus attributes to the Jewish priests a direct Christian content, and often describes them as Christian from the start.) Yet beneath his doctrine of mercy, the priest's soul was full of malice and ressentiment, the rancor of the mentally weak whose will-to-power turns mto hostility and revenge against the other, which is his only way to affirm himself. Thereby the Jewish priests - pictured as early Christians - have created the "slave morality" which official Christianity then propagated through the world. Whereas the anti-Semites accuse the Jews of having killed Jesus, Nietzsche accuses them of having begotten Jesus.

{quote} The slave revolt in morality begins when ressentiment itself becomes creative and gives birth to values: the ressentiment of natures that are denied the true reaction, that of deeds, and compensate themselves with an imaginary revenge. While every noble morality develops from a triumphant affirrnation of itself, slave morality from the outset says No to what is "outside," what is "different," what is "not itself", and this No is its creative deed. {endquote} (GM I 10, pp. 472-4)

Priestly morality is the morality of the existentially impotent, in

{p. 125} whom ressentiment against the powerful and the self-assured has become a value-creating force. The existential "slaves" take vengeance on their "masters" on an ideal plane, in that they succeed in imposing their own values on the masters, and even cause them to interiorize those new values, and thereby subjugate them. Henceforth the powerful person sees himself/herself as sinner not only in the other's eyes but in his/her self-perception as well, which is the ultimate form of subordination and also corruption.

Nietzsche thereby places the critique of ancient Judaism at a crucial junction of his philosophy. It is grounded in ressentiment, a key Nietzschean category, and is responsible for the corruption of Europe through Christianity. However, his critique does not serve Nietzsche in fighting against contemporary Jews, but against contemporary Christianity and the "modern Ideas" he sees as its secular offshoots (liberalism, nationalism, socialism, etc.). For modern Jews, after they go out of the ghetto and become secularized, Nietzsche has far-reaching prospects, whereas the modern anti-Semite is analyzed as the genealogical cousin of the ancient Jewish priest, whose properties the anti-Semite has inherited, but on a lower level still, since he lacks the value-creating power which the Jewish priests have demonstrated, and since, in order to feel that he is somebody, he requires the fake security of mass culture and the "togetherness" of a political movement.

Nietzsche's analysis, like Socrates' dialectic, ends in an ironic reversal. While the anti-Semite is the ancient Jewish priests' relative, the modern Jew is their complete opposite (or "antipode"). As such modern Jews are candidates for helping to create a new Dionysian culture and redeem Europe from the decadence instilled by their forefathers: danielou-paglia.html.

{Where do the Jewish Bolsheviks fit in here? They promoted equality, like the Christians, but by violent - even genocidal - methods, like "early" Judaism: ginsberg.html. The Bolsheviks' sexual revolution (before Stalin's changes) was nihilist, not Dionysian. The Bolsheviks separated husbands & wives, parents & children, into mere individuals: sex-soviet.html, whereas Shiva is depicted as paired (married) - with Kali or some other goddess. Given that Nietzsche could not have foreseen such a Bolshevik regime, it is far-fetched to apply his views unchanged, as if such later events did not happen. And what about Zionism? Can we assume that Nietzsche would endorse the holocausts of this century, not least that of the Palestinians? Might the devastation of World Wars I and II, and the danger that war now poses to the planet, have changed his preference for a martial ethic? Might it not be time to find an alternative ascetic philosophy, one where sex is blessed? Taoism is an ascetic philosophy which does just that.}

Rhetorically, too, the anti-Semite learns that, at bottom he has the same psychology as his worst enemies in their worst period, and this is supposed to shock the anti-Semite into disgust - perhaps at himself. However, by using anti-Semitic images ostensibly against themselves Nietzsche is playing with fire.

It follows that Nietzsche holds two rather univocal positions: against modern anti-Semitism and against ancient priestly Judaism, which are linked by the same genealogical root, ressentiment. Nietzsche's ambivalence derives from the combination of these two positions, which look contradictory but are not so in effect. From a logical or systematic point of view there is no contradiction between

{p. 126} rejecting both anti-Semitism and the moral message of ancient Judaism, yet this combination creates a strong psychological tension which ordinary people find hard to sustain. Hence the need to transcend ordinary psychology and cultivate an uncommon, noble character capable of holding on to both positions despite the tension they create. In other words, what is needed in order to maintain the two tense positlons is not only a common link between them (the opposition to ressentiment) but a special personality whose mental power allows it to maintain a stance of "nevertheless" and insist on the distinction it involves.

This is nothing new. Almost every important matter in Nietzsche calls for an uncommon psychology. This is true, above all, of amor fati, which draws creative power from hard truths, and affirms life despite the demise of all "metaphysical consolations". In Nietzsche one needs anyway to go beyond the limits of ordinary humanity and human psychology, toward a goal which his rhetoric dramatizes under the name of Ubermench. Nietzsche's position on Judaism and anti-Semitism is no exception.

In a word, Nietzsche's non-contradictory ambivalence requires holding two (or more) differentiated positions that are logically compatible yet psychologically competitive and hard to maintain together for the ordinary person. This analysis can also help explain why Nietzsche's position has so widely been abused; for the mental revolution which he sought did not take place, while his ideas were generalized, vulgarized and delivered to a public in which the old psychology prevailed.

At the same time, we noticed on several occasions that Nietzsche himself exploits anti-Semitic feelings and images which exist in other people (or whose traces persist in his own mind) and manipulates them in a dialectical technique, as a rhetoric device to insult the antiSemites or hurt Christianity. For example:

{quote} Consider to whom one bows down in Rome itself today, as if they were the epitome of all the highest values - and not only in Rome but over almost half the earth ... three Jews, as is known, and one Jewess (Jesus of Nazareth, the fisherman Peter, the rug weaver Paul, and the mother of the aforementioned Jesus named Mary). {endquote} (GM I 16, p. 489)

As I said before, Nietzsche in this and similar cases is playing a

{p. 127} dangerous game; his meaning can be twisted against his intention, his irony misunderstood and his words may enhance that which he actually opposes. The irony of speaking ironically to the vulgar is that the speaker himself may end up the victim of an ironic reversal, by which his intent is undermined and his discourse is taken at face value. Nietzsche as a master of the art should have anticipated the ironic fate of ironizers.


We have also seen that Nietzsche does not attribute to Judaism a constant essence or genealogical pattern, but distinguished three periods or phases within it.

(1) In Biblical times (the Old Testament) Nietzsche perceives Dionysian greatness and natural sublimity that arouses his reverence. He does not accept the content of the biblical figures' religious belief, but admires their attitude to life and religion because it was vital, natural, this-worldly and was built on self-affirmation rather than self-recrimination {narcissism perhaps?}. In the Jewish "Old Testament," the book of divine justice, there are human beings, things, and speeches in so grand a style that the Greek and Indian literature have nothing to compare with it. With terror and reverence one stands before these tremendous remnants of what man once was. (BGE 52, pp. 255-6)

{Did Nietzsche endorse the genocide at that heart of First Temple Judaism? guthridge.html}

{quote} At the time of the kings, Israel also stood in the right, that is, the natural relationship to all things. Its Yahweh was the expression of a consciousness of power, of joy in oneself, of hope for oneself: through him victory and welfare were expected; through him nature was trusted to give what the people needed above all, rain. Yahweh is the god of Israel and therefore the god of justice: the logic of every people that is in power and has a good conscience. {endquote} (AC 25, p. 594)

(2) The second temple and its priests are the object of Nietzsche's harsh and merciless attack. Here the "slave morality" revolution was performed, the major de-naturation and reversal of values that led to Christianity, as analyzed before.

{p. 128} To have glued this New Testament to make one book, as the "Bible," as "the book par excellence" - that is perhaps the greatest audacity and "sin against the spirit" that literary Europe has on its conscience. (BGE 52, pp. 255-6)

{quote} The concept of God falsified, the concept of morality falsified: the Jewish prlesthood did not stop there. The whole of the history of Israel could not be used: away with it! These priests accomplished a miracle of falsification.... With matchless scorn for every tradition, for every historical reality, they translated the past of their own people into religious terms, that is, they turned it into a stupid salvation mechanism of guilt before Yahweh, and punishment. {endquote} (AC 26, p. 595)

On such utterly false soil, where everything natural, every natural value, every reality was opposed by the most profound instincts of the ruling class, Christianity grew up - a form of mortal enmity against reality that has never yet been surpassed. (AC 27, p. 598)

(3) Diaspora Jews again arouse Nietzsche's admiration, because they have demonstrated the power of affirming life in the face of suffering and drawn force from it. Moreover, Diaspora Jews have the merit of havmg rejected Christ and served as a constant critic and counterbalance to Christianity.

{quote} In the darkest times of the Middle Ages ... it was Jewish free-thinkers, scholars, and physicians who clung to the banner of enlightenment and spiritual independence in the face of the harshest personal pressures and defended Europe against Asia. We owe it to their exertions, not least of all, that a more natural, more rational, and certainly unmythical explanation of the world was eventually able to triumph again. {endquote} (HAH 475, pp. 61-2)

{quote} The Jews, however, are beyond any doubt the strongest toughest and purest race now living in Europe; they know how to prevail even under the worst conditions) even better than under favorable conditions), by means of virtues that today one would like to mark as vices - thanks above all to a resolute faith that need not be ashamed of "modern ideas." {endquote} (BGE 251, pp. 377-8) 128


As a result of their hard and long schooling and invigorating experience, the Jews reached the modern era as the strongest and most stable people in Europe, and could have dominated it, though they did not wish to do so. However, once they decided to mingle with the other European nations, then because of their greater existential power they would naturally, without intending to, reach a dominant position, in the sense of determining the norms and the new values in Europe. If however, the Jews continued their seclusion, Nietzsche grimly predicted they would "lose Europe" (that is, emigrate or be expelled) as their ancestors had left or been driven from Egypt. Nietzsche advocates the first alternative. The Jews must pour their gifts and power into a new Europe that will be free of the Christian heritage: the forebears of Christ must work today in the service of the modern anti-Christ (i.e. Nietzsche-Dionysus), and thereby pay their debt to Europe for what their priestly ancestors had done to it.

For this to happen, European society must open up to the Jews and welcome them, and the Jews must end their voluntary seclusion and involve themselves with all European matters as their own: in this way they will, inevitably, attain excellence and end up determining new norms and values for Europe. Nietzsche welcomes this prospect with enthusiasm, because he sees the Jews as allies and levers in the transition to a higher human psychology and culture. If the Nazis considered the Jews as Untermenschen, to Nietzsche they were a possible catalyst of the Ubermensch.

Nietzsche thus assigns a major role to the Jews as Jews within his new Europe. He opposes a nationalist (or Zionist) solution, because he wants the Jews to mix with the other European peoples. At the same time he also opposes the usual, passive and imitative, Jewish assimilation. His solution is creative assimilation, in which the Jews are secularized, excel in all European matters and serve as catalysts in a new revolution of values - this time a curative, Dionysian revolution - that will overcome the Christian culture and the "modern ideas" born of it (the Enlightenment, liberalism, nationalism, socialism, etc. (and, if living to see it, fascism as well). The Jews' role is thereby a transitory one, for it will abolish itself when successful.

It should be noted that Nietzsche's admiration for Diaspora Jews

{p. 130} is not aimed at them as bearers of a religious culture, but as displaying the human, existential element which he needs for his revolution. Nietzsche, of course, is as opposed to the Jewish religious message as he is to any other transcendent religion. The Jews' role is certainly not to "Judaize" Europe in a religious sense. But Nietzsche seems to believe that their existential qualities can be extracted regardless of the content of their belief. Nietzsche would rather expect them to secularize and practice creative assimilation in the framework of an atheistic Europe.

I must also emphasize that Nietzsche's pro-Jewish attitude does not derive from liberalism. Just as his attack on nationalism and racism is coming, so to speak, "from the right", so his defense of the Jews derives from Nietzsche's own (Dionysian and anti-liberal) sources. Also, the Jews are supposed to enhance that same Nietzschean philosophy of life - a task which many Jews, who were and are liberals, can hardly welcome.

Nietzsche's enthusiasm for the vocation of modern Jews is not merely theoretical; it derives also from a classic problem confronting any revolutionary: where is the lever within the existing system by which to revolutionize it? Who are the forces uncontaminated by the system? The existence, in the form of the Jews, of a human group he considers more powerful than the others and free of Christian culture is a practical asset which Nietzsche badly needs in order to make his revolution look less utopian in his and in others' eyes.

In any case, my study shows that the Jewish issue was far more central to Nietzsche's thought and project than is usually recognized. The former corrupters of European culture and its designated redeemers, the Jews are placed by Nietzsche at two of the critical junctures in his philosophy. It is thus noteworthy that he always attributes some decisive historical role to the Jews, whether negative or positive, corrupting or redeeming. In this ironic sense he continues to regard them as a kind of "chosen people" - or the secular, heretical Nietzschean version of this concept!

This closes the circle of our analysis. Nietzsche as anti-antiSemite (and the "Dionysian" admirer of modern Jews) complements Nietzsche as critic of ancient Judaism, within the same basic conception and a single philosophical project. Using these distinctions, we have delineated the structure of Nietzsche's ambivalence and the relation between its ingredients. The analysis found a fairly consistent thought behind it. Beyond the contradictions flashes of brilliancy, dubious historical examples and arbitrary

{p. 131} statements which Nietzsche's pen often ejects, we discovered at bottom a uniform way of thinking, applied to a central philosophical theme.


Here the question must arise: why was Nietzsche abused more than other philosophers? What was it that attracted his abusers? There seem to be at least four reasons for this: his special mode of writing; the non-ordinary psychology required by his position; the "rightwing" origin of his sensibilities; and his political impotence.

(1) Nietzsche's mode of writing is one major reason. His rhetoric is deliberately often wild and paradoxical, intended to arouse and provoke rather than to simply argue and inform; Nietzsche is at times ironic, at times bombastic, and both tonalities are traps for the naive reader; for Nietzsche's irony is not easy to decipher and his fanfare produces overstated effects which others might take at face value. Another factor in his writing is the often deliberate use of contradiction, which he used for several reasons, including his "experimental" way of philosophizing which shuns final, dogmatic truths and tries to undermine its own authoritative tone.

(2) Another reason for abuse is that Nietzsche's philosophy puts a strain on ordinary mentalities and often breaks the usual "packaging" of intellectual strands; it requires a person to hold on at the same time to positions which are usually considered psychologically incompatible. There is always some narrow path Nietzsche traces within the cruder ordinary distinctions, a path which cannot always be defined conceptually but requires, he says, a certain personality to locate and identify. Such narrow paths are dangerous, however, in philosophy no less than in mountaineering; one can easily take a deep fall and imagine one drags the author along.

(3) Several of Nietzsche's sensibilities, criticisms, etc., when taken in isolation, may invoke the joy of recognition in a rightist reader. Because of this partial, local affinity he finds with a Nietzschean idea or sentiment, such a reader then sweeps the whole of Nietzsche into his own camp, no matter how many unsurpassable obstacles he has to jump or ignore. This is bad, intellectually corrupt, historically unjust, but very common and all too human. Today there is also a left-wing appropriation of Nietzsche, which makes him the father of pluralism (even of tolerance in a "post-modern" sense), the liberator from "hierarchic" rationalism and the "oppressive" Enlightenment.

{p. 233; Ch. 11} Paul Mendes-Flohr, ZARATHUSTRA'S APOSTLE: Martin Buber and the Jewish renaissance

{p. 235} Zionism had come to assume the task of the long-awaited Messiah and "liberate" the Jews from the Diaspora, a condition that was interpreted not only politically but spiritually. This was in consonance with the traditional Jewish understanding of Israel's millenial sojourn in exile; the Zionists, however, tended to view Jewry's splritual torment in radically secular terms, as generally pointing to the deformations of Jewry's inner life. Nietzsche's analysis of the spiritual maladies of bourgeois civilization appealed to many Zionists, for it offered them insights into what they regarded as being the spiritual corruption and desiccation attendant on two thousand years of exile, in which Israel was denied the normal conditions of healthy, life-affirming existence in tune with the creative forces of the people. Buber was hence one of a veritable battalion of Nietzsche's disciples among the ranks of the Zionists. His distinction was that among German-speaking Zionists, he quickly took center-stage, and provided a vocabulary about which others would organize their commitment to a Nietzschean renewal of Israel's spiritual and creative life. In 1901 he published, in the central organ of the World Zionist Organization, Die Welt, to which Herzl had just appointed him to serve as editor-in-chief, a poem in which he encapsulated his vision of a reawakening of Israel's long-slumbering life-force:

{p. 236} Lord, Lord, shake my people, Strike it, bless it, furiously, gently, Make it burn, make it free, Heal your child

God, give the lost glow Back to my weary people, In wild, intoxicated flames Bestow on them your happiness.

See, only a fever can save it And raging exuberance, Awaken it, and, Father, lead the throng To Jordan's field.

The Nietzschean inflections of this pathetic cry are unmistakable, as they are in an essay he published a month earlier, "Judische Renaissance." This essay was to have an seminal impact on Zionist and twentieth-century Jewish discourse in general.

{But would Nietzsche have endorsed the apartheid basis of the Jewish state?}

{p. 250} Marx, Nietzsche and Freud were said to be the three greatest influences on twentieth-century thought: two heretical German-speaking Jews and a German with a complex and seductive attitude toward just those Jews who might feel attracted to Marx or Freud. In his forthcoming book Nietzsche's Corps/e, Geoff Waite suggests, not without some justification, that the aim of Nietzsche's writing is to seduce leftists away from communism, and that the Nietzsche industry has been remarkably successful in achieving this goal with which it has been subliminally infected {in this sense, Nietzsche has been the "prophet" of Post-Modernism}. ... Kaufmann was a German with one Jewish parent; when his book was first published in 1950 it helped to dispel many misconceptions. His

{p. 251} study aimed at making Nietzsche safe for liberal democracy ... {end of quotes}

To buy Nietzsche and Jewish Culture from Amazon:

Nietzsche urged the overthrown of "moralism" - which he attributed to Zarathustra and his influence on Christianity via Second-Temple Judaism. Zionism, however, a reversion to "First Temple Judaism", is free of that Moralism.

Nietzsche as an Aryanist: nietzsche2.html.

Nietzsche was fascinated by the struggle between the Apollonian and Dionysian cultures.

Alain Danielou & Camille Paglia on Dionysian culture in the ancient world, & the current attempt to revive it: danielou-paglia.html.

Write to me at contact.html.