Samsara Audio
Samsara Audio
Nietzsche and the Politics of Leisure | with Daniel Tutt

Nietzsche and the Politics of Leisure | with Daniel Tutt

Reading Nietzsche as a political thinker in his context

This week I’m excited to share a conversation I had with Daniel Tutt, a Marxist and psychoanalytic theorist, and also a professor of philosophy at George Washington University, about his recently published book How to Read like a Parasite: How the Left got High on Nietzsche.

His book provides a much needed intervention in Nietzsche studies by rigorously insisting on reading Nietzsche in his political context as an enemy of the socialist and Marxist movements for equality in his time. Daniel also helped me work through some questions I had related to Marxism and egalitarianism. What especially stood out to me was the way in which access to active leisure posed a key battleground for both Nietzsche and Marx.

You can purchase Tutt’s new book here (affiliate link), as well as check out how to support him and his work over at his Patreon. I’m personally a subscriber at Daniel’s Patreon, and I benefit from his interviews with prominent thinkers in Marxism, psychoanalysis, and more.

Books recommended by Daniel near the end of the podcast:

As always, don’t forget to subscribe to Samsara Audio to get new episodes directly in your inbox, and you can also follow my free monthly newsletter on religion, philosophy, and psychoanalysis at Samsara Diagnostics. Thanks!

Time stamps:

00:00 Introduction and Overview

01:50 Introducing Daniel Tutt

02:10 Exploring Nietzsche's Relationship with the Left

03:23 Daniel Tutt's Personal Journey with Nietzsche

04:42 Nietzsche's Influence on Young Intellectuals

06:26 Nietzsche's Political Context and Opposition to Equality Movements

09:12 The Role of Nietzsche in Modern Society

12:49 The Problem with Rights Framework

15:01 The Struggle for Equality and Freedom in Nietzsche's Philosophy

18:35 The Role of Nietzsche in the Formation of Modern Society

34:45 The Problem of Egalitarianism and Excellence

45:57 Revisiting Aristotle and Marx: The Question of Leisure

46:26 The Role of Leisure in Socialism and Liberalism

47:09 The Impact of Capitalism on Social Class and Marriage

48:24 Nietzsche's Views on Tradition and Hierarchy

49:25 The Cultural Impact of Capitalism and the Importance of Leisure

50:24 Nietzsche's Opposition to the American Revolution's Promise of Happiness

52:04 The Practical Implications of Capitalism and the Need for Change

53:56 The Role of Nietzsche in Understanding Political Myths

55:02 The American Dream: A Myth or a Possibility?

56:37 The Struggle for Stability and Human Flourishing in a Capitalist Society

57:59 The Oppressive Norms of Capitalism and the Need for Change

01:01:34 The Role of Nietzsche in Understanding and Overcoming Resentment

01:06:18 The Influence of Nietzsche on Various Communities

01:09:06 The Importance of Active Leisure in a Communist Society

01:14:18 The Need for Rationality and Expression in Politics

01:17:51 Closing Remarks and Future Projects

01:19:18 The Intersection of Freud and Marx in Understanding Society

Samsara Audio
Samsara Audio
Samsara Audio is dedicated to finding the freedom in finitude through religion, philosophy, and psychoanalysis. Subscribe for free weekly emails at