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Stance: An International Undergraduate Philosophy Journal

Volume 11, April 2018

Emily Mastragostino
Pages 57-67
DOI: 10.5840/stance2018115

Ceci N’est Pas Une Atheist
A Nietzschean Analysis Of “Atheism” In Memes

In The Gay Science Nietzsche famously writes that “God is dead.” Modern atheists, including “Internet Atheists,” have taken this as their epithet. I argue that the perpetuation of the statement “God is dead” contradicts the atheistic core, such that Internet Atheists parallel theists in identity construction. Insights from Nietzsche, Jean Luc Nancy, Sigmund Freud, and Christopher Hitchens allow for an exploration of the theistic underpinnings of Internet Atheists. The doctrine of Internet Atheism, as it is represented in humorous online depictions of God, suggests an inability to confront the consequences of the death of God, an inability which Nietzsche warns against in the Parable of the Madman.