Julius Evola is, like Ernst Junger or Knut Hamsun, a fairly controversial and taboo figure in most academic and intellectual circles. Luckily, though, I don't care what books are approved or proscribed for me by my betters, and so I dove into this book to see what all of the fuss was about. Evola is, quite simply, a brilliant thinker whose understanding of the universal martial ethos is pretty much unparalleled (unless you want to throw Sun Tzu's name into the mix. He weaves a thread through concepts like Bushido and Jihad so seamlessly that the reader forgets he's travelling across continents and centuries within the space of a few pages.
Like with Ernst Junger, Julius Evola sometimes gets slandered and lumped in with Nazis, but his traditionalist, elite view of the warrior and what he represents (and transcends) is at odds with the plebeian nature of the Third Reich. and his critique of the harnessing of the warrior spirit for the bourgeois project of empire, colonialism, and the military-industrial complex (then unnamed, but still in its nascent form) shows not only how silly the "Nazi" brand is, but how Pyrrhic a task it is trying to plot such a fluid thinker on a Left-Right axis.
My only minor quibble (and it is minor) is that some of the essays don't so much compliment each other, as reiterate their themes. A more varied selection on the same topic would have been better, but this is the fault of the publisher, not of the writer. Recommended for anyone who likes to think about man's propensity for transcendence, through combat or other means, regardless of your own political outlook.
- Paperback: 152 pages
- Publisher: Arktos Media Ltd (28 April 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 190716636X
- ISBN-13: 978-1907166365
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 0.9 x 21.6 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 209 g
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- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 23,868 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)