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May 28, 1839 - De File
Does Collecting Make You Feel Dirty?
cbertsch
cbertsch
May 28, 1839
The twelfth in a series:
There is no history: There is only Biography. The attempt to perpetuate, to fix a thought or principle, fails continually. You can only live for yourself: Your action is good only whilst it is alive -- whilst it is in you. The awkward imitation of it by your child or your disciple, in not a repetition of it, is not the same thing but another thing. The new individual must work out the whole problem of science, letters, & theology for himself, can owe his fathers nothing. There is no history: only biography.
It's not hard to see why Nietzsche was so drawn to the author of this quote. And it's only slightly harder to perceive that the former's promotion of "relativism" reflects, in part, the influence of a peculiarly American way of thinking. Sometimes, when a change of course is required, the backward find themselves on the leading edge of progress.

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