Basic Writings

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University of Illinois Press, 9 .. 2003 - 178 ˹
This book contains the first English translations of The Origin of the Moral Sensations and Psychological Observations, the two most important works by the German philosopher Paul Rée. These essays present Rées moral philosophy, which influenced the ideas of his close friend Friedrich Nietzsche considerably.

Nietzsche scholars have often incorrectly attributed to him arguments and ideas that are Rées and have failed to detect responses to Rées works in Nietzsches writings. Rées thinking combined two strands: a pessimistic conception of human nature, presented in the French moralists aphoristic style that would become a mainstay of Nietzsches own writings, and a theory of morality derived from Darwins theory of natural selection. Rées moral Darwinism was a central factor prompting Nietzsche to write On the Genealogy of Morals and the groundwork for much of todays evolutionary ethics.

In an illuminating critical introduction, Robin Small examines Rées life and work, locating his application of evolutionary concepts to morality within a broader history of Darwinism while exploring Rées theoretical and personal relationship with Nietzsche. In placing Nietzsche in his intellectual and social context, Small profoundly challenges the myth of Nietzsche as a solitary thinker.
 

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Acknowledgments
ix
PSYCHOLOGICAL OBSERVATIONS
1
CONTENTS
5
On Human Actions and their Motives
12
On Women Love and Marriage
37
Mixed Thoughts
50
On Religious Things
63
Essay on Vanity
75
Preface
85
The Origin of Conscience
100
The Origin of Vanity
126
Moral Progress
153
Review and Conclusion
161
Bibliography
169
Index
175
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Senior Lecturer in Television, Media Department, University of Huddersfield. Runs production safety courses for the Independent TV Training Association.

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