Tuesday, February 26, 2019


For Me Politics Is Dead

Wolfgang J. Mommsen, "The Neglected (III): Jacob Burckhardt — Defender of Culture and Prophet of Doom," Government and Opposition 18.4 (Autumn, 1983) 458-475 (at 459):
Jacob Burckhardť's rather remote way of life, devoted almost exclusively to scholarly work and to the study of art, including numerous trips to see art treasures, museums, galleries and the like in Italy and elsewhere in Europe, was chosen deliberately. Early in his life Burckhardt had for a few years acted as political editor of the Basel newspaper; soon afterwards he decided to leave politics alone: 'For me politics is dead, whatever I do, I do as a human being'.2 He did not wish to become entangled in any way whatsoever in day-to-day politics.

2 Cf. Karl Löwith, Jacob Burckhardt. Der Mensch inmitten der Geschichte, Stuttgart, second ed., 1966, p. 127. Translations by the author.
Hat tip: Marc Addington.

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