Ah: Ernst Jünger. The refined aesthete who skirted around Fascism but never really donned the uniform. Hiding his vile views in highfalutin language, and therefore making it possible to always doubt what he really was. And as Carl Schmitt having a long afterlife and as the fervour of 1960s radicalism chilled and the restless intellectuals looked for new guide posts — back in fashion.

Alex Ross summarizes most of this, and points out:

For many critics, this elder-hipster pose made Jünger all the more dangerous. Although he had retreated from his high-fascist phase, he had not renounced it, and his skepticism toward democracy never wavered.

Surprising that the mystic aesthete (today he would probably be a vegan and an anti-vaxxer) remained a Fascist. Or maybe not. The path from being a performative radical to being a Fascist is, as always, a straight one.

© Henning Bertram 2024