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In this paper I am supposed to choose an existential or nihilist thinker and apply their thoughts to the 20th century problems that we identified at the beginning of class Im not going to do this What Im going to write about is one of if not the biggest problem mankind has ever created for itself Christianity While Christianity was not on the list of problems that we identified I cannot help but wonder if the man I will examine and his writings had anything to do with the decline of this outdated monolith Of course Im speaking of none other than Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche born Oct 15 1844 was a German philosopher who together with Soren Kierkegaard shares the distinction of being a forerunner of Existentialism He studied at the universities of Leipzig and Bonn receiving his doctorate degree from the Leipzig in 1869 Because he had already been published he was offered the chair of classical philology at the University of Basel in Switzerland before the doctorate was officially conferred on him He left the university in 1879 due to ill health caused by a short stint in the military and began concentrating on his writings My focus will be on three of his works that show his opinions of the ChristianSlave morality The Gay Science Thus Spoke Zarathustra and Beyond Good and Evil Beginning with The Gay Science first published in 1882 Nietzsches contempt for Christianity as well as other groups notably Germans came to the forefront In the third book Nietzsches Madman comes looking for God As men who did not believe laughed and asked if God had become lost the madman uttered the words that the author is best known for God is dead God remains dead And we have killed him The Enlightenment which had already begun to question religion laid the groundwork for the madman Those men to whom he questions are the Enlightened thinkers
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