Abstract

Nietzsche argues in the Genealogy of Morality (GM) that key aspects of modern European morality arose as “cures” for widespread human sickness but are ultimately making us sicker (“poisoning” us). This article provides a systematic overview of how Nietzsche believes morality has functioned as a cure and poison for European humanity. Drawing on my own previous work on Nietzsche's concept of health, I sketch an overview of the (1) sickness(es), (2) treatments, and (3) pathogeneses discussed in each of the three treatises in terms of a single (and plausible) concept of health. The result is a systematic interpretive overview of the core polemical argument in GM.

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