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This is the fifth part of Constantin von Hoffmeister’s translation of Ernst Jünger’s profound treatise War as Inner Experience, which will be published here in installments.


As the war flared like a torch over the gray masonry of the cities, everyone suddenly felt torn from the chain of their days. Staggering, disturbed, the masses flooded the streets under the crest of the enormous wave of blood that towered before them. Tiny before this wave were all the values whose interlocking had swung time in ever more frantic turns. The fine, the complicated, the ever more sharply honed culture of nuance, the elaborate fragmentation of pleasure evaporated in the spraying crater of drives thought to be submerged. The refinement of the spirit, the tender cult of the brain, was lost in the clanging rebirth of barbarism. Other gods were raised to the throne of the day: strength, fist, and masculine courage. When their embodiment thundered in long columns of armed youth over the asphalt, cheers and awe-struck shivers hung over…

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Translated by Constantin von Hoffmeister

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