chapter  3
Typical Historians
Pages 23

The mode of history Freidrich Nietzsche addresses is the Monumental. The underpinning psychology is that of the typical man of action. His need for history is that of someone "who needs models, teachers, comforters, and cannot find them among his contemporaries". The Monumental historian's actions are not ordinary actions, but those that are aimed at a world-historical significance. Accordingly, a major task of a philosopher of history will involve the analysis of the psychological reasons as to why historians turn to the past in the typical ways they do. Nietzsche acknowledges that the acts of choosing and selecting, common with Monumental historiography bring about the same epistemological problems in terms of correspondential description. The opposition between logical insight and immediate intuition would have been more at home in the work of Schopenhauer, for whom it marked the central difference between thinking under the four-fold root of sufficient reason and apprehending immediately, absent the Kantian categories of space and time.