Regarding Ernst Jünger’s “The Worker” – Part 3 of 6

The “type” that acts here is the man of the technological era; his face is already profiled in the hard and simple traits of the soldier in the last years of the war, with the combat of “material” and machines. It was he who left behind what already belongs today to the “romantic countryside”; all the bourgeois attitudes contained in these imaginary expanses. “No, the German is not a good bourgeois, and it is where he is the least bourgeois that he is strongest.” It was necessary that the Germans mistrusted the will to become bourgeois exactly now! The bourgeois costume began “to look ridiculous, like all the exercise of civic rights, notably the right to vote”; the bourgeois costume, mainly, gave to the German a “unfortunate allure.” Have we forgotten the comic side that encompasses a glow so unusual as the very serious advocacy of Hans Grimm in favor of “bourgeois honor?” Although we feel enthusiastic for a cause that, to truly say, doesn’t concern the German man. Jünger is conscious of all the consequences of his position: technology implies an assault against all attachments, including those of “the bourgeois, the christian, the nationalist” considered as the most natural. That is a front of reaction, whose efforts to reestablish itself “are necessarily linked up with all that is the hackneyed and dusty world: romanticism, liberalism, conservatism, the Church, the bourgeoisie.” Also, he adds, with the idea of the “state” (Stand). The advent of the man that corresponds to the “type” is, for him, less and less compatible with the order of the old days. “The nonsense believed on Sundays and old public holidays” seem more and more glaring. To listen to “this onerous mixture of the disgust and the presumptuousness of official discourses made by the government, patently national and Christian, which never lacks an appeal to culture,” we ask how “such a varnish of inconsistent idealism, coated with romanticism, can still be possible.” Faced with the gossip of German atheists, Jünger, who declares himself son, grandson, and great grandson of entire generations of atheists, and in whose eyes doubt itself is suspect, affirms: “The decline of the individual announces at the same time the last spasm of the Christian soul. And as for us, we should understand that between the Figure of the Worker and the Christian soul, he can no longer maintain the relation between this soul and the old images of god.”

Where will we still find the bridge that rejoins Jünger with bourgeois culture, Western civilization, Christian tradition? Until this day, the poor nationalists and bourgeois patriots have yet to understand that they are frightfully ridiculous each time they claim amicable bonds with Jünger!


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