Love and the Moral Psychology of the Hegelian Nietzsche: Comments on Robert Pippin’s Nietzsche, Psychology, and First Philosophy
Abstract

Abstract:

Pippin treats Nietzsche’s moral psychology as the key to his philosophy. Three aspects of the psychology are meant to bear this weight: (1) a critical and deflationary, but irreducibly hermeneutic, conception of the nature of moral psychology itself; (2) a thesis that eros is central to Nietzsche’s theory of valuing; and (3) an expressivist theory of action, which replaces the causal role of intention with an interpretive notion of expression in explaining action. Pippin’s handling of all three, but especially the third, places Nietzsche’s philosophy in a Hegelian light, as does his view that genuine action arises from a deep-going self-dissatisfaction. I raise doubts about whether the expressivist theory of action can be adequate to all actions and suggest that the centrality of self-dissatisfaction for Pippin stands in tension with Nietzsche’s own construal of the demand for affirmation of life.