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A Strange Homology: Buber’s and Jünger’s Descriptions of the Fighting Individual

(Original title: A Strange Homology: Buber’s and Jünger’s Descriptions of the Fighting Individual)
Filozofia, 78 (2023), 7, 533 - 547.
Type of work: Original Articles
Publication language: English
A complex approach to Martin Buber’s oeuvre requires a consideration of both his dialogical and pre-dialogical writings. The latter include in some cases emphases that differ substantially from the emphases promulgated in Ich und Du. I will focus on three essays from the final stage of Buber’s pre-dialogical period which contain reflections on the fighting individual. The comparison with Ernst Jünger’s reflections on the same motif will show the intellectual proximity between the two authors and will help us understand how Buber’s thought was positioned shortly before his dialogical turn. While after this turn Buber and Jünger could be easily seen as polar opposites, this is not the case when we juxtapose their early reflections on the fighting individual in World War I. There are striking similarities which I denote as a homology, as there is no evidence of influence in either direction. The presented analysis provides an insight into Buber’s controversial pre-dialogical positions as well as into the more general processing of the World War I experience in Germanophone philosophy.

The Fighting Individual, War, Community, the Enemy, Martin Buber, Ernst Jünger

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