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Title: Max Stirner's egoism
Author: Jenkins, John
Awarding Body: Lancaster University
Current Institution: Lancaster University
Date of Award: 2010
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Most of the literature dealing with Max Stirner's The Ego and Its Own has concentrated on the weaknesses inherent in his defence of egoism, and the dominance of this critique has tended to obscure the more positive aspects of his conception of selfhood. In this thesis I argue that, while Stirner's understanding of self-interest and selfhood is indeed seriously defective, his interpretation of the liberated human agent should be recognised as a significant contribution to the individualist cause. Paradoxically, by examining the shortcomings of the conception of the egoistic self presented in The Ego and Its Own, I believe it is possible to make a more favourable assessment of Stiner's 'proper egoist'. In particular, by comparing his formulation of the autonomous human being to the more consistent and convincing view of self-determining agency presented in Nietzsche's Genealogy, I bring to light startling similarities between the two thinkers, showing that various key concepts associated with the individualist project - and normally considered to be characteristically Nietzschean creations - are already present in Stirner's work. Ln addition, I contend that the argument of The Ego and Its Own contains important lessons both for those who wish to espouse individualism and for its critics.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available