Essays and Aphorisms

This selection of thoughts on religion, ethics, politics, women, suicide, books, and many other themes is taken from Schopenhauer’s last work, Parerga and Paralimpomena, which he published in 1851. No German philosopher had written so well or so readably before him, and none had propounded the atheistic view that everything may not be all for the best. This articular if despairing vision contributed to Schopenhauer’s enormous popularity. In his introduction R. J. Hollingdale explains the metaphysical background to Schopenhauer’s ideas and the psychological setting for the theory of the ‘will’, which anticipated Freud’s notion of the unconscious.