Mencken and Nietzsche

Mencken and Nietzsche

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Overview

Mencken and Nietzsche by H. L. Mencken, Frederick Nietzsche

This volume contains the complete text of two books. H. L. Mencken translated the book The Philosophy of Frederick Nietzsche from the original German. The second book, The Antichrist, was written by F. W. Nietzsche and translated by Mencken, who also wrote the forward. The book has been reformatted for consistency, to produce an accurate Table of Contents, and to display well on modern e-readers. Some redundancy has been removed from available electronic editions. The original manuscripts were used to correct errors of totally garbled text that appear in all the previously published free electronic versions.

Mencken was an admirer of Nietzsche's ideas. It appears that some of Mencken's ideas about Jews and blacks (not his term, unfortunately) became more enlightened because of the influence of Nietzsche's writings. The two men had relatively similar, but highly controversial, especially for the time, views of religion.
The Central branch of the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore contains Mencken's papers and many of his books. They are stored, fittingly, in the library's Mencken Room.

In 1907, Mencken published a book entitled The Philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche, continuing his lifetime of study of the work of Nietzsche. Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche was October 15, 1844 in the small town of Rocken, in what is now Germany, but was then considered part of the Prussian Province of Saxony. (He did not use the middle name Wilhelm in his most important writings.) He died on August 25, 1900. He was, as was Mencken, an important contributor to many disciplines. He was especially well-known for his writings as a philosopher, poet, cultural critic and philologist.

He was a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Basel for ten years, providing him with an ideal occupation in which to pursue his writing. Where Mencken was heavily influenced by reading Twain's Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Nietzsche may have had his views on religion influenced by the book Life of Jesus by David Strauss while a young man.

While Nietzsche was most renowned as a philosopher, and his ideas continue to be influential, in the popular culture that dominates the current era he is, perhaps, most famous for some 1960s era graffiti for both a quotation and a (purported) response.

Nietzsche: God is dead.
God: Nietzsche is dead.

The two men are linked in several ways. Mencken was of German descent and, of course, Nietzsche was born in what became the country of Germany after its unification in 1871. In this volume, Mencken is connected to Nietzsche because of the controversial writings of both men, his aforementioned The Philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche, and because he both translated Nietzsche's The Antichrist and wrote the forward to it.

It is important to understand the language used in this volume. Some of the language used in Mencken's works is considered disgusting and incredibly troubling by modern standards. The racism and sexism are not acceptable in modern society. Indeed, as this introduction is being written, several members of their countries' Olympic teams have been removed from competition in the 2012 London Olympic Games for communicating racist remarks. The use of Nietzsche's work by Nazism to justify its policies is well-known. This volume contains the complete text of two books. H. L. Mencken translated the book The Philosophy of Frederick Nietzsche from the original German. The second book, The Antichrist, was written by F. W. Nietzsche and translated by Mencken, who also wrote the forward.

The book has been reformatted for consistency, to produce an accurate Table of Contents, and to display well on modern e-readers. Some redundancy has been removed from available electronic editions. The original manuscripts were used to correct errors of totally garbled text that appear in all the previously published free electronic versions.

Product Details

BN ID: 2940015825084
Publisher: AfterMath
Publication date: 11/27/2012
Series: Baltimore Authors , #12
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 897,524
File size: 667 KB

About the Author

Henry Louis Mencken was born in Baltimore, September 12, 1880. He moved to the house pictured on the front cover of this volume in 1883 and lived there until his death on January 26, 1956. The house, located at 1524 Hollins Street in the historic Union Square area of southwest Baltimore, Maryland, is now classified as a National Historic Landmark and is on the U. S. national Register of Historic Places. The house is not currently open to the public. He said of his house: "I have lived in one house in Baltimore for nearly 45 years. It has changed in that time, as I have-but somehow it still remains the same.... It is as much a part of me as my two hands. If I had to leave it I’d be as certainly crippled as if I lost a leg." Mencken was often called the “Baron of Baltimore."
It is surprising that anyone with such a chauvinistic view of his childhood house could have such a cosmopolitan view in other matters. Perhaps it is in the nature of his hometown city. The Union Square area of Baltimore is part of a larger area that is highly appealing to artists, having large buildings with good access to light, as well as low rents. Parts of the surrounding area have been home to an interesting eclectic community, although other nearby areas are plagued by vacant buildings.

After graduating from high school, he worked for three years in his father's cigar factory, after which he went to work for the now-defunct Baltimore Morning Herald. After six years, he moved to the The Baltimore Sun where he began writing the editorials and opinion pieces that he became famous for. In 1924, he and George Jean Nathan created and published an influential magazine, The American Mercury, with Mencken serving as editor until 1933.

Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche was October 15, 1844 in the small town of Rocken, in what is now Germany, but was then considered part of the Prussian Province of Saxony. (He did not use the middle name Wilhelm in his most important writings.) He died on August 25, 1900. He was, as was Mencken, an important contributor to many disciplines. He was especially well-known for his writings as a philosopher, poet, cultural critic and philologist.

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