Bruce Benson on Nietzsche’s rejection of Wagner

For Nietzsche, Wagner's artistic decadence lay in the fact that, in Wagner's compositions, "the whole is no longer a whole" but an artificial composite with no inherent integrity. But worse still for Nietzsche—indeed, worthy only of utter contempt—was Wagner's acceptance of the notion that humanity stands in need of redemption. "There is nothing about which Wagner has thought more deeply than redemption: his opera is the opera of redemption."
—Bruce Benson, Books & Culture