Troubled Waters: A Collaboration

Jen Webb, Andrew Melrose

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


‘Human, All Too Human is the monument of a crisis ... the title means “where you see ideal things, I see what is—human, alas, all-too-human”—I know man better’ (Nietzsche 1967a: 283; emphasis in original). So writes Nietzsche, opening his remarkable self-portrait Ecce Homo (‘Behold, the man’; written 1888, first published 1908), and reflecting bleakly on the mass of humanity. It is difficult to dispute this perspective given that, over the century-plus since Nietzsche wrote this, history has recorded crisis after crisis. Of the several monumental crises of our age (the thrashing and gasping of late capitalism; the anthropogenic destruction of the planet; parliamentary democracy’s gradual crumbling under the weight of agonistic and personality politics), the one currently disturbing us, the one that most seems to demand our active engagement is the mass of humans across the world who are fleeing disasters: crossing borders; crossing oceans. A major product of this mass movement is change: new people, new languages, new cultural traditions and expectations; new relationships. And, of course, new policies, new strategies of containment and compliance, new tactics of flight. Human. All too human.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalAxon: Creative Explorations
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019


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