Though when most people think of superheroes they think of the type with super powers, the original idea of the superman' was developed by Friedrich Nietzsche in the 1800s. The ubermensch (literally overman in German) never had extra-ordinary powers and wasn't developed as the protector of man. Instead, the superman is a person who has overcome all the flaws of mankind and is essentially perfect.' This idea, though it was thought of as an ideal goal that all people should strive for, has almost completely been used for less-than-good agendas. The details of what Nietzsche's superman is supposed to be and how that compares with how it was used to the advantage of many dictatorships and other oppressive leaders is amazing and in many ways disgusting. What Nietzsche tried to create with his idea of the superman was human perfection, but what it actually created was fuel for evil in the world.
Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) developed his idea of the superman after many years of studying and teaching philosophy. It was a culmination of many ideals that Nietzsche felt were the ideals a person should follow to lead a perfect life. The superman is essentially his own society, determining his own values, finding his own happiness, and finding joy in being the one to control all of this himself. He doesn't believe in a God or a soul or an afterlife, and therefore makes the most out of his life since he has no one else's morals to follow. One interesting aspect of Nietzsche's superman is his lack of compassion for the weak. Nietzsche believed that any pity felt for the less-abled only hindered the growth of the superman. This is very much like survival of the fittest that has allowed animals to evolve into better and better creatures. Though it seems uncaring and thoughtless, in some sense the idea makes sense because the superman is a type of evolution of man. Without the need to support the weak, the superman can rise above the common man and evolve...
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