Friedrich Nietzsche: Die Götzen-Dämmerung [Twilight of the Idols]

(2505 words)

The title of Götzen-Dämmerung [Twilight of the Idols, 1869], written by Nietzsche in 1888 and published in 1889, parodies Götterdämmerung [Twilight of the Gods, 1876], the last in Richard Wagner’s cycle of four operas which make up Der Ring des Nibelungen. The title is supposed to be “eine Erholung, ein Sonnenfleck” (“a relaxation, a sunspot”) but Nietzsche’s predominantly negative critique in fact is directed against many great philosophers and literary figures, they being the idols Nietzsche wishes to sound out. The subtitle, “Wie man mit dem Hammer philosophirt” (“h…

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Gallagher, David. "Die Götzen-Dämmerung". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 21 December 2010
[, accessed 01 October 2016.]