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Journal Article

On the Logic of Values

Manuel Dries
Journal of Nietzsche Studies
No. 39 (SPRING 2010), pp. 30-50
DOI: 10.5325/jnietstud.39.1.0030
Stable URL:
Page Count: 21

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Topics: Nihilism, Transvaluation, Conation, Humans, Christianity, Logical disjunction, Truth, Logic, Soul, Permanence
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On the Logic of Values
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Abstract This article argues that Nietzsche’s transvaluation project refers not to a mere inversion or negation of a set of nihilism-prone, Judeo-Christian values but, instead, to a different conception of what a value is and how it functions. Traditional values function within a standard logical framework and claim legitimacy and “bindingness” based on exogenous authority with absolute extension. Nietzsche regards this framework as unnecessarily reductive in its attempted exclusion of contradiction and real opposition among competing values. I propose a nonstandard, dialetheic model of valuation that requires a value to be both true and false as well as neither true nor false. In our Europe, life is no longer quite so uncertain, contingent, nonsensical. [. . .] The power man has achieved now allows a reduction of those means of discipline of which the moral interpretation was the strongest. — KSA 12:5[71] The logic of our conscious thinking is only a crude and facilitated form of the thinking needed by our organism [. . .] A simultaneity-thinking [ein Zugleichdenken], for example, is needed of which we have hardly an inkling. [. . .] We are still growing continually, our sense of time and place, etc., is still developing. — KSA 11:34[124]

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