The Joyful Wisdom (or: The Gay Science)

Friedrich Nietzsche (1844 - 1900)
Translated by Thomas Common (1850 - 1919)

"The Joyful Wisdom," written in 1882, just before "Zarathustra," is rightly judged to be one of Nietzsche's best books. Here the essentially grave and masculine face of the poet-philosopher is seen to light up and suddenly break into a delightful smile. The warmth and kindness that beam from his features will astonish those hasty psychologists who have never divined that behind the destroyer is the creator, and behind the blasphemer the lover of life. In the retrospective valuation of his work which appears in "Ecce Homo" the author himself observes with truth that the fourth book, "Sanctus Januarius," deserves especial attention: "The whole book is a gift from the Saint, and the introductory verses express my gratitude for the most wonderful month of January that I have ever spent." Book fifth "We Fearless Ones," the Appendix "Songs of Prince Free-as-a-Bird," and the Preface, were added to the second edition in 1887. (Summary by Dr Oscar Levy)

Genre(s): Poetry, *Non-fiction, Philosophy

Language: English

Section Chapter Reader Time
Play 00 Editorial Note and Preface TimSC
Play 01 Jest, Ruse and Revenge: A Prelude in Rhyme TimSC
Play 02 Book First, Part 1 TimSC
Play 03 Book First, Part 2 TimSC
Play 04 Book Second, Part 1 TimSC
Play 05 Book Second, Part 2 TimSC
Play 06 Book Third, Part 1 TimSC
Play 07 Book Third, Part 2 TimSC
Play 08 Book Fourth: Sanctus Januarius, Part 1 TimSC
Play 09 Book Fourth: Sanctus Januarius, Part 2 TimSC
Play 10 Book Fifth: We Fearless Ones, Part 1 TimSC
Play 11 Book Fifth: We Fearless Ones, Part 2 TimSC
Play 12 Book Fifth: We Fearless Ones, Part 3 TimSC
Play 13 Appendix: Songs of Prince Free-as-a-Bird TimSC