nietzsche and friendship

51d0zmO1YBL._SX314_BO1204203200_Richard Marshall and Alexander Nehamas at 3:AM Magazine:

Moral values, however, Nietzsche insists, are not the only values there are (in fact, he often writes as if moral values are not values at all). There are also values that depend not on our similarities but on our differences, values that bear a close relationship to the values of aesthetics and the arts. In the arts we always admire new and different ways of representing the world and expressing ourselves: we admire the artists whose work differs significantly from the work of those around them. It is on such values that Nietzsche wants to model the values of the rest of life.

The arts have another advantage, which fits very well with his perspectivism. Perspectivism consists in part in the view that there is no privileged representation of the world, no theory that can explain once and for all every worldly phenomenon. Many of its critics infer from this that perspectivism reduces to a relativism according to which every view is as true as any other. There are several answers to this charge. But the connection with the arts provides one of the strongest. For, although it makes no sense to think of “the greatest” artist or “the greatest” work, we are still perfectly capable of distinguishing between the quality of different artists and different works. Why, then, should that be impossible in the rest of life as well?

more here.

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