Deleuze, in Difference and Repetition writes:

Drama has but a single form involving all three repetitions. Nietzsche's Zarathustra is clearly a drama, a theatrical work.

It seems to me Platos Dialogues are also of the same form; except that they, contras Nietzsche agonistic affirmation of 'life'; his drama operates in the domain of theoria; one might say that this is against the spirit of drama, so despite the apparent similarity of form of the dialogue to drama, as a play in voices; we might say the deeper agonistic similarity isn't there.

Which is it?

  • nietzche was't agonostic.
    – user6917
    Jan 1, 2015 at 4:50
  • WRT the question i voted close cos it's not clear what you asking. maybe someone who had read the book could help but a) it remains pretty silly of you not to explain for the casual reader and b) it seems like you're tripping yourself up by trying too hard. zarathustra is an obvious drama the quote is on face value unproblematic... and any reply will likely be opinion, as it is, until you or deleuze define drama anyway.
    – user6917
    Jan 1, 2015 at 4:55

2 Answers 2


A few quick thoughts. Clearly Plato's works are dramatic too. They are also, as you suggest, dramas of ideas -- of course structured very differently to Zarathustra. But my sense is that the "real" point here is that an Idea dramatizes intensive spatiotemporal dynamisms. It might be worth contrasting this part of D+R with The Method of Dramatization, a short address to a philosophical society conveying some of the essential elements of Deleuze's philosophy of difference, and in particular the structure of Ideas as spiritual expressions or automata.

A "classical" Deleuzian example here might be the idea of truth, which possibly remains obscure unless other concepts are made to resonate with it. That is: unless one applies the method of dramatization to discover beneath it other forces, to find or discover the means to relate it to an essence or future. So in the case of the truth we have the jealous man, the inquisitor, etc. These are not psychological profiles but more like dramatic conceptual personae. A question here for interpretation might be which sort of forces, which sort of lives and spirits and feelings Nietzsche is in conversation with in TSZ, and how they might be different than those in Plato.


I can fine no reference to Nietzsche as an agnostic in Deleuze, you can't expect to import these fanciful readings into whatsoever philosopher you choose, and expect to be doing anything but strained literature studies.

In answer to your question they are not "dramas" in the same way, and you'd be better off reading what Nietzsche has to say on Plato, if you care, rather than trying to decide the objective fact of whether or not Plato's Dialogues have any drama in them.

  • 1
    Look again - not agnostic, but agoniste. Jan 2, 2015 at 13:07
  • i'm a jerk, lol sorry
    – user6917
    Jan 4, 2015 at 5:20

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