Published by Elephant Editions & Active Distribution
Psychology for Free Spirits, Ontology for Social War
How is it possible to live free and joyful in this world of domination?
The key idea Nietzsche offers us is this: don’t hide from struggle in
fantasy worlds or imaginary futures, but affirm life, say yes to life
here and now. With all its violence, cruelty and loneliness; and all its
encounters of tenderness, wildness, delight and possibility.
The first part of the book is a reading of Nietzsche’s philosophy of
individual self-making. It begins with his radical psychology of
“drives”, which understands human beings as always multiple and always
open to change. It works through his theories of incorporation, herd
instinct, the sovereign individual, and slave morality, to reach the
image of the “free spirit” who stands against the norms and creates new
The second part builds on these Nietzschean ideas with others from more
recent thinkers, to develop an “ontology for social war”, a framework
for thinking through relations of conflict and affinity, power and
domination. It addresses questions such as: how do we form groups that
are not conformist herds? How do we spread anarchic desires, without
becoming advertisers or missionaries? How do we fight, without becoming
cruel or cold?
While the first part of the book can be read as an accessible
introduction to core aspects of Nietzsche’s thought, this is not a work
of scholarship but one individual’s use of some Nietzschean ideas as
weapons for self-transformation and social struggle.