måndag 2 februari 2015

Junge Freiheit reviews "Ernst Jünger -- A Portrait"

In my Jünger biography I say this: Ernst Jünger was unique, a great author, maybe Germany's greatest author since Goethe. Not everyone has this outlook. But a review of my book in the German periodical Junge Freiheit has noted this strain, this way of lifting Ernst Jünger to the realm of classics.

Junge Freiheit is a German political weekly, a radical conservative forum for debate, culture and politics. The title means "Young Freedom". The paper was founded in 1986 and immediately, or shall we say, in the 1990's, became a subject of controversy, at least for the leftist German mainstream. Otherwise it's rather natural for a country like Germany, with its conservative past, to have a political magazine covering issues with some footing in tradition, moderation, anti-communism and anti-globalism.

The circulation of Junge Freiheit is 22.000 (2012 figure by courtesy of Wikipedia.) I even mentioned Junge Freiheit in my biography. In chapter 4 I touched upon how Jünger apreciated this right-wing, radical conservative newspaper. Therefore I was glad to hear that Karl-Heinz Schuck in Junge Freiheit 6/2015 has read my Jünger bio. Here I'll try to summarize his review, with quotes translated from the original German into English by me.

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Schuck begins by intimating that "Ernst Jünger -- A Portrait" is no academical biography but a portrait by a devoted reader: "To Svensson, Jünger is the greatest German author since Goethe, and this admiration for him shows through the almost 300 pages like a red thread."

Schuck notes how my book takes a wide outlook on the subject of Jünger, with a bio for starters and then summaries and critiques of his central works. Schuck likes the poingnant quotations and the way I explain them in relation to Jünger's philosophical creed.

To conclude, the review says this:
Svensson (...) cleverly connects Jünger's work with that of other authors having inspired him, and also with authors being to some extent like him. Enigmatically, we are shown common traits with the American Science Fiction author Robert Heinlein and Rudolf Steiner, the founder of Anthroposophy. This shows how wide and deep Ernst Jünger's thinking was and that therefore his reputation as a "Writer of the Century" is rightfully deserved.

The review can only be found in the paper issue of Junge Freiheit. However, if you want to check out Junge Freiheit in general, here it is.

As for my book -- "Ernst Jünger -- A Portrait" -- you can buy it on Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk. For Swedish customers we for instance have the outlet Adlibris.

My presentation of "Ernst Jünger -- A Portrait" on this blog
Living Traditions' (Australia) review of the Jünger book
Nordic Sphinx: A Svensson Poem