Continuing discussion.

EPS Blog

This is the blog area for the Evangelical Philosophical Society and its journal, Philosophia Christi.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

2008 EPS Papers (Coblentz)

Travis Coblentz

Lex Luther vs. Superman: Using Bonhoeffer to Make Nietzsche's Ethic Christian

Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to examine the following comment by Dietrich Bonhoeffer: "Nietzsche's Superman is not really, as he supposed, the opposite of the Christian; without knowing it, Nietzsche has here introduced many traits of the Christian made free, as Paul and Luther describe him." In particular, I shall attempt, using Bonhoeffer's view of Christian ethics, to show the similarity between the ethical life of the Ubermensche and the Christian. Bonhoeffer and Nietzsche share a negative view of deontological ethics - Bonhoeffer uses the language of law or duty, while Nietzsche opposes all generalization or abstraction of morality. I shall give a brief description and justification of Bonhoeffer's ethic, and then argue that, in light of this, Nietzsche's Ubermensche is, with a few qualitications, an appropriate description of the ethical life of the Christian.

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