The Legacy of Weimar’s “Conservative Revolution”
Forty-Third Annual Conference of the German Studies Association
Oct. 3-6, 2019, Portland, Oregon
Organizers: Eliah Bures and Göran Dahl
Weimar’s so-called “Conservative Revolution” has often (and rightly) been blamed for helping to prepare the cultural and intellectual ground for the radical ultra-nationalism that culminated in Hitler’s Third Reich. More often writers and academics than traditional political actors, the most prominent Conservative Revolutionaries—figures such as Carl Schmitt, Ernst Jünger, Martin Heidegger, Hans Freyer, Arthur Moeller van den Bruck, Ernst Niekisch, Oswald Spengler, and Hans Zehrer—issued despairing diagnoses of the ills of liberal society. They also pined openly for a new order that would restore the authority, faith, and rootedness they believed had been destroyed by the advent of modernity. Equally estranged from Wilhelmine conservatism and Weimar democracy, they were spokesmen for a creed perhaps best characterized as “radical conservatism” or “intellectual fascism.”
We invite proposals for a panel (or possibly two) devoted to the post-1945 legacy of Weimar’s Conservative Revolution. We are especially interested in papers which explore the Conservative Revolution’s political and intellectual influence in light of the current right-wing resurgence taking place across the West. Contributions are welcome from scholars working across a range of disciplines, including political history, cultural and intellectual history, literary studies, film and media studies, sociology, and political theory. Please note that while some Conservative Revolutionaries certainly joined the NSDAP, the legacy of Nazism per se is outside the panel’s scope.
Possible topics include, but are not limited to:
-The continuing intellectual influence on the post-1945 radical right of figures like Schmitt, Spengler, Heidegger, and Jünger
-The development of the European New Right, especially in German-speaking lands and under the influence of post-1945 writers and publicists who looked to Weimar’s Conservative Revolution (e.g., Armin Mohler)
-Media and cultural strategies, provocation, “metapolitics” in theory and practice, the relationship between right-wing politics and the arts
-Specific publications and publishers: Wir Selbst, Sezession, Antaios, Junge Freiheit, Arktos, etc.
-New Right figures in Germany and Austria—for example, Botho Strauss, Dieter Stein, Hans-Jürgen Syberberg, Ernst Nolte, Götz Kubitschek, Henning Eichberg—but also perhaps figures from elsewhere, such as Alain de Benoist or Alexander Dugin, who are indebted to Weimar’s Conservative Revolution.
-Continuity or change in radical conservative ideology across the 1945 watershed; the survival of radical conservative thinking in the German Kulturraum after 1945
-The origins and spread of “identitarianism”
-The relationship between the far right as an intellectual movement and far-right political parties
Please send questions and abstracts (of 350-500 words, accompanied by a brief bio) to both Eliah Bures (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Göran Dahl (email@example.com) no later than January 26, 2019.
For additional information about the German Studies Association conference, please visit: https://www.thegsa.org/conference/current-conference