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A German Officer in Occupied Paris: The War Journals, 1941-1945

Ernst Junger (Klett-Cotta) Elliot Neaman Thomas S. Hansen Abby J. Hansen

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Hardback

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Columbia University Press
15 December 2018
Diaries, letters & journals; History; Second World War
Ernst Junger was one of twentieth-century Germany's most important-and most controversial-writers. Decorated for bravery in World War I and the author of the acclaimed western front memoir Storm of Steel, he frankly depicted war's horrors even as he extolled its glories. As a Wehrmacht captain during World War II, Junger faithfully kept a journal in occupied Paris and continued to write on the eastern front and in Germany until its defeat-writings that are of major historical and literary significance.

Junger's Paris journals document his Francophile excitement, romantic affairs, and fascination with botany and entomology, alongside mystical and religious ruminations and trenchant observations on the occupation and the politics of collaboration. While working as a mail censor, he led the privileged life of an officer, encountering artists such as Celine, Cocteau, Braque, and Picasso. His notes from the Caucasus depict the chaos after Stalingrad and atrocities on the eastern front. Upon returning to Paris, Junger observed the French resistance and was close to the German military conspirators who plotted to assassinate Hitler in 1944. After fleeing France, he reunited with his family as Germany's capitulation approached. Both participant and commentator, close to the horrors of history but often distancing himself from them, Junger turned his life and experiences into a work of art. These wartime journals appear here in English for the first time, giving fresh insights into the quandaries of the twentieth century from the keen pen of a paradoxical observer.
By:   Ernst Junger (Klett-Cotta)
Foreword by:   Elliot Neaman
Translated by:   Thomas S. Hansen, Abby J. Hansen
Imprint:   Columbia University Press
Country of Publication:   United States
Dimensions:   Height: 235mm,  Width: 156mm, 
ISBN:   9780231127400
ISBN 10:   0231127405
Series:   European Perspectives: A Series in Social Thought and Cultural Criticism
Pages:   496
Publication Date:   15 December 2018
Audience:   General/trade ,  General/trade ,  ELT Advanced ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Unspecified

Ernst J nger (1895-1998) was a major figure in twentieth-century German literature and intellectual life. He was a young leader of right-wing nationalism in the Weimar Republic. Among his many works is the novel On the Marble Cliffs, a symbolic criticism of totalitarianism written under the Third Reich. Elliot Neaman is professor of history at the University of San Francisco and the author of A Dubious Past: Ernst J nger and the Politics of Literature after Nazism (1999). Thomas Hansen, a longtime member of the Wellesley College German Department, is a translator from the German. Abby Hansen is a translator of German literary and nonfiction texts.

Reviews for A German Officer in Occupied Paris: The War Journals, 1941-1945

Through these journals, we see J nger consorting with resistors and collaborators, intellectuals and artists, drinking champagne, dining in sumptuous restaurants, and accompanying other officers to nightclubs, where naked women perform. Wandering around the city, he combs through antiquarian bookshops, stops in at galleries, discusses literature with friends, and acutely observes plants and flowers change with the seasons. He recounts in detail his dreams, nightmares, and musings on war. . . . A unique historical testimony.--Kirkus Reviews Ernst J nger's record of German-occupied Paris and the battlefields of the Caucasus is a treasure trove for readers interested in the history of the Second World War. Even more, though, it is a literary accomplishment of the first order, a document of European modernism, in which this master stylist leaves traces of the violence of the age between the lines of his crystalline prose.--Russell A. Berman, Walter A. Haas Professor in the Humanities, Stanford University, and senior fellow, Hoover Institution


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