Nietzsche on the Decadence and Flourishing of Culture Andrew Huddleston


  • Carlo Chiurco



Agonist, Nietzsche, Decadence and Flourishing of Culture, Andrew Huddleston


The main focus of Andrew Huddleston’s book concerns the notion of culture in Nietzsche’s philosophy, and the regrettable oversight it has received from recent scholars, who have overwhelmingly favored discussions of Nietzsche’s valorization of the “great individual." In doing so, the author pays a great service to a more balanced general comprehension and assessment of Nietzsche, showing a certain degree of courage to approach a concept (that of culture), usually closely associated with Marxist philosophical reflection. We tend to forget that, on the contrary, Nietzsche’s philosophical debut—may we say manifesto?—was entirely focused on cultural renovation at large, to the extent that even his conception of the “great individual” of the time—his Schopenhauer-inspired “metaphysics of the genius," notably the artistic genius—shows distinctively supra-individualistic features, with the tragic artist essentially heralding a new era where mankind retrieves an immediate connection with the essence of reality. In this regard, not only is culture a key element of Nietzsche’s philosophy, but the decadence and flourishing of culture—the book’s subject by its title—was arguably one of Nietzsche’s deepest philosophical preoccupations throughout his entire productive life. Therefore, Huddleston’s claim that Nietzsche cannot be judged as a staunch individualist—or at least not just that—is well-supported, just as his suggestion that a paradigm change in Nietzsche studies on this subject would be more than welcome.


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How to Cite

Chiurco, C. . (2020). Nietzsche on the Decadence and Flourishing of Culture Andrew Huddleston. The Agonist, 13(1-2), 176–181.