The Deadly Game. Deciphering Duel and its Impossible Legal Prohibition through Nietzsche and Hegel
Keywords:Duel, master-slave, non-patrimonial rights, Nietzsche, Hegel.
AbstractThe duel may be understood as a modern European practice, essentially private, of aristocratic origins, through which the parties entered knowing that they were risking their lives in order to prove their honour. Each attribute of the duel, the private, the modern, the European and the aristocratic origin is subject of debates and the article intends to provide arguments in favour of a definition as such. The duel is difficult to decipher in the contemporary mindset – the present-day individual would qualify it either in a radical disapproving manner as barbaric or, in a romantic light, as a noble or naive pursuit, but in any case as a reckless, wasteful and hazardous affair. As such, the duel was subjected to multiple legal prohibitions during history, interdictions which it survived only to find its general natural dissolution at the beginning of the First World War. The article also intends to shed a light on the meaning of the duel through the distinct Nietzschean and Hegelian understanding of the master/slave conceptual couple, thus providing a justification for both the resilience against legal prohibitions and the incomprehensible dimension of the duel for the contemporary world.
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