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

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

Ernst Jünger 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 memoir from the western front, Storm of Steel, he frankly depicted the war’s horrors even as he extolled its glories. As a Wehrmacht captain during the Second World War, Jünger 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.

Jünger’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. Working as a mail censor, he led the privileged life of an officer, encountering artists such as Céline, Cocteau, Braque, and Picasso. His notes from the Caucasus depict chaos and misery after the defeat at Stalingrad, as well as candid comments about the atrocities on the eastern front. Returning to Paris, Jünger observed resistance and was peripherally involved in the 1944 conspiracy to assassinate Hitler. 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 hovering above them, Jünger turned his life and experiences into a work of art. These wartime journals appear here in English for the first time, giving us fresh insight into the quandaries of the twentieth century from the keen pen of a paradoxical observer.



Ernst Jünger (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, but although the Nazis tried to court him, Jünger steadfastly kept his distance from their politics. Among his works is On the Marble Cliffs, a rare anti-Nazi novel written under the Third Reich.

Title:A German Officer in Occupied Paris: The War Journals, 1941-1945
Edition Language:English

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

  • Willy Marz Thiessam

    A German Officer in Occupied Paris by Ernest Junger, is not a pleasant book to read despite all the wonderful art and philosophy.. However I highly suggest anyone who wants to understand the war and w...

  • Iron Mike

    So well written from an author so well read. I loved his nickname for Hitler (Kniebolo). And for his brothers and even his wife (Perpetua). Lots of reading of Leon Bloy, must look him up. And of cours...

  • Julia Simpson-Urrutia

    Junger was a well-known German author and officer during World War II who "met intellectuals and artists across the political spectrum" while living in occupied Paris. As such, he can be considered pa...

  • Niklas Pivic

    From the foreword, by Elliot Neaman:"As the Nazis began their final ascent to power after winning 107 seats in the Reichstag in the elections of September 1930, Jünger distanced himself from the part...

  • Michelle Mock

    *I received a DIGITAL Advance Reader Copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. That being said I will emphasize that my opinions and my review are always honest and always my ...

  • Evan

    [Placeholder until I actually acquire and read this:]I wanted to comment on Hadrian's review of this, but he seems to have his messages set on block mode, and I can't comment on his review since I onl...

  • Patrick

    I just don’t like this guy....

  • Robert

    Just a few years ago, I discovered and read a rare English language translation of a German First World War memoir for contrast and comparison with the mostly British memoirs I was reading for the 100...

  • Tobias

    The title of this English translation is perhaps not that well chosen. Jünger was hardly a typical German officer. Many World War I soldiers could recognize their own experiences of the Great War in ...

  • Alan

    Reading these journal you are first struck by the absence of any sense that a war is happening, Junger spends his time wandering the streets of Paris in search of books, art, beetles, artists, philoso...