Topic: Does nihilism necessarily follow from the death of God?
Order Description
Most references should be taken from the book: The Nietzsche Reader (Wiley-Blackwell)
Readings:
The Gay Science, 108-112, 125, 343.
The Gay Science 276-277 & 340-341
Human, all too Human, Section 1: ‘Of First and Last Things’.
Demonstrate 2 things:
a) An informed and sound knowledge of the primary material, be it Schopenhauer or Nietzsche or both.
b) An engagement with a sample of secondary literature. This does not have to be overly extensive; but there does not have to be some engagement and for this reason: an engagement with the debates in the literature on any given topic helps you place your reading and argument in a research context and in this way you can best state what is independent or original/fresh about your interpretation of the question.
Marks will be awarded for these things:
a) Quality of writing: this means to be as lucid as possible; to write fluent prose, and to have a good presentation.
b) Structure of the essay: it’s important your structure your essay. In both essays you should have an Introduction and a Conclusion; in the longer essay you might wish to break down your reading/argument into sections. Make sure you are self-reflexive throughout the essay by providing links between your different arguments and interpretations.
c) Independence of thought: we are looking for genuine independence of thought and this can be attained by making sure you read carefully the primary material and have fresh and interesting things to say about it. You will need help with opening up a question or a topic, and this comes from reading a sample of secondary reading (e.g. two to four pieces on a given topic). Here try to read not only chapters of books but journal articles; and make sure you are familiar with the latest research. For this an internet search is often helpful and will yield results.
d) Knowledge and understanding: it’s important you show that you understand the question or topic under investigation and this requires a careful reading of, and engagement, with, the material

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