S-Space Researcher Institutes (연구소) American Studies Institute (미국학연구소) 미국학 미국학 Volume 37 Number 1/2 (2014)
Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen, AMERICAN NIETZSCHE A History of an Icon and His Ideas Chicago: U of Chicago, 2012.
- Lee, Yonghwa
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 미국학연구소
- 미국학, Vol.37 No.1, pp. 129-138
- This review introduces Ratner-Rosenhagen’s American Nietzsche, a book which traces the dynamic interaction between Nietzsche’s philosophy and modern American thought. Ratner-Rosenhagen begins her book by pointing out remarkable affinities between Emerson’s and Nietzsche’s thoughts in her prologue. After the prologue about the presence of Emerson’s thought in Nietzsche’s philosophy, the first half of the book examines the way in which Americans responded to Nietzsche until 1930. This is followed by a chapter devoted to Kaufmann’s restoration of Nietzsche from his underserved infamy (or obscurity) starting in the 1950s. The following chapter discusses three “anti-foundationalist” readings of Nietzsche: Harold Bloom’s, Richard Rorty’s, and Stanley Cavell’s. The book closes with an epilogue which discusses Allan Bloom’s critique of left-wing professors’ abuse of Nietzsche’s value relativism in his 1987 best-seller, The Closing of the American Mind. This books complements Nietzsche in American Literature and Thought (edited by Mansfred Pütz) which features a collection of interdisciplinary essays on the philosophical influences of Nietzsche’s thoughts on American literary men and thinkers. Although Ratner-Rosenhagen’s approach does not offer an in-depth analysis of how such critical issues as perspectivism, the problem of language, and religious imagination, the book paves a way for students of various disciplines including philosophy, literature, history, and cultural studies. American Nietzsche is an admirable achievement not only in Nietzsche studies but also in American intellectual history.