Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900)

German literature: Friedrich Nietzsche Friedrich Nietzsche, father of nihilism

Known as the father of nihilism Nietzsche influenced many of his contemporaries with his philosophical and poetic writing. His work is complex and his theorems have often been fatally misunderstood.

Nietzsche proclaimed the death of God, thus challenging the foundation of Christian belief and morality. He also stressed the necessity of the advent of some superior being - super- or overman - and of a general will to power, inherent to all living creatures.

He is best known for 'Thus spoke Zarathustra', 'Birth of Tragedy' and 'The Gay Science'.