Carl Schmitt

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Carl Schmitt

Carl Schmitt (July 11, 1888 – April 7, 1985) was a German jurist, philosopher of politics and religion, political theorist, and professor of law.

Biography

Schmitt studied law in Berlin, Munich and Strasbourg and took his graduation and state exams in the then-German Strasbourg in 1915. He volunteered for the army in 1916. The same year, he earned his habilitation in Strasbourg. He taught at various business schools and universities - in Munich, Greifswald, Bonn, Berlin, and Cologne.

Schmitt joined the NSDAP on May 1, 1933. Within days of joining the party, Schmitt was party to the burning of books by Jewish authors, rejoicing in the burning "un-German" and "anti-German" material, and calling for a much more extensive purge, to include works by authors influenced by Jewish ideas. In July he was appointed Preußischer Staatsrat (Prussian State Counselor) by Hermann Göring and became the president of the Vereinigung nationalsozialistischer Juristen ("Union of National-Socialist Jurists") in November. He also replaced Hermann Heller as professor at the University of Berlin (a position he held until the end of World War II). He presented his theories as an ideological foundation of the national socialist state, and a justification of the "Führer" state with regard to legal philosophy, in particular through the concept of auctoritas.

Half a year later, in June 1934, Schmitt became editor in chief for the self-published newspaper "Deutsche Juristen-Zeitung" ("German Jurists' Newspaper"); in July 1934, he justified the process of the Night of the Long Knives as the "highest form of administrative law" ("höchste Form administrativer Justiz") and the authority of Hitler with "The leader defends the law" ("Der Führer schützt das Recht"). Schmitt presented himself as a radical anti-semite and also was the chairman of a law teachers' convention in Berlin in October 1936, where he demanded that German law be cleansed of the "Jewish spirit" ("jüdischem Geist"), going so far as to demand that all publications by Jewish scientists should henceforth be marked with a small symbol.

Nevertheless, in December 1936, the SS publication Das schwarze Korps accused Schmitt of being an opportunist, a Hegelian state thinker and basically a Catholic, and called his anti-semitism a mere pretense, citing earlier statements in which he criticized the National socialists' racial theories. After this, Schmitt resigned from his position as "Reichsfachgruppenleiter" (Reich Professional Group Leader), although he retained his post as a professor in Berlin, and his post as "Preußischer Staatsrat". Although Schmitt continued to be investigated into 1937, further reprisals were stopped by Göring

In 1945, Schmitt was captured by the American forces; after spending more than a year in an internment camp, he returned to his home town of Plettenberg following his release in 1946, and later to the house of his housekeeper Anni Stand in Plettenberg-Pasel. Schmitt refused every attempt at de-nazification, which effectively barred him from positions in academia. Despite being isolated from the mainstream of the scholarly and political community, he continued his studies especially of international law from the 1950s on, and he received a never-ending stream of visitors, both colleagues and younger intellectuals, until well into his old age. Important among these visitors were Ernst Jünger, Jacob Taubes, and Alexandre Kojève.

In 1962, Schmitt gave lectures in Spain, two of them giving rise to the publication, the following year, of Theory of the Partisan (Telos Press, 2007), in which he qualified the Spanish civil war as a war of national liberation against international Communism. Schmitt regarded the partisan as a specific and significant phenomenon that, in the latter half of the twentieth century, indicated the emergence of a new theory of warfare.

Schmitt

Schmitt died on April 7, 1985 and is buried in Plettenberg.

Family

His daughter Anima Schmitt de Otero (1931–1983) was married, from 1957, to Alfonso Otero Valera (1925-2001), a Spanish law professor at the University of Santiago de Compostela and a member of the ruling Spanish Falange party. She translated several works by her father into Spanish. Letters from Carl Schmitt to his son-in-law have also been published.

His works

His works were very influential throughout the 20th Century and are notable for influencing National Socialist political concepts. His most notable works are On Dictatorship (1921), Political Theology (1922), The Crisis of Parliamentary Democracy (1923), The Concept of the Political (1926), Nomos of the Earth (1950), Hamlet of Hecuba (1956), and Theory of the Partisan (1963). Much of his work criticized liberalism, parliamentary democracy, and liberal cosmopolitanism from a nationalist Conservative perspective.

Bibliography

English Translations of Carl Schmitt's Works

Note: a complete bibliography of all English translations of Schmitt's books, articles, essays, and correspondence is available here.

  • The Concept of the Political. George D. Schwab, trans. (University of Chicago Press, 1996; Expanded edition 2006, with an Introduction by Tracy B. Strong). Original publication: 1927, 2nd edn. 1932.
  • Constitutional Theory. Jeffrey Seitzer, trans. (Duke University Press, 2007). Original publication: 1928.
  • The Crisis of Parliamentary Democracy. Ellen Kennedy, trans. (MIT Press, 1988). Original publication: 1923, 2nd edn. 1926.
  • Four Articles, 1931–1938. Simona Draghici, trans. (Plutarch Press, 1999). Originally published as part of Positionen und Begriffe im Kampf mit Weimar — Genf — Versailles, 1923–1939 (1940).
  • Hamlet Or Hecuba: The Intrusion of the Time Into the Play. David Pan and Jennifer R. Rust, trans. (Telos Press, 2009). Originally published 1956.
  • The Idea of Representation: A Discussion. E. M. Codd, trans. (Plutarch Press, 1988), reprint of The Necessity of Politics (1931). Original publication: 1923.
  • Land and Sea. Simona Draghici, trans. (Plutarch Press, 1997). Original publication: 1954.
  • Legality and Legitimacy. Jeffrey Seitzer, trans. (Duke University Press, 2004). Original publication: 1932.
  • The Leviathan in the State Theory of Thomas Hobbes: Meaning and Failure of a Political Symbol. George D. Schwab & Erna Hilfstein, trans. (Greenwood Press, 1996). Original publication: 1938.
  • The Nomos of the Earth in the International Law of the Jus Publicum Europaeum. G.L. Ulmen, trans. (Telos Press, 2003). Original publication: 1950.
  • On the Three Types of Juristic Thought. Joseph Bendersky, trans. (Praegar, 2004). Original publication: 1934.
  • Political Romanticism. Guy Oakes, trans. (MIT Press, 1986). Original publication: 1919, 2nd edn. 1925.
  • Political Theology: Four Chapters on the Concept of Sovereignty. George D. Schwab, trans. (MIT Press, 1985 / University of Chicago Press; University of Chicago edition, 2004 with an Introduction by Tracy B. Strong. Original publication: 1922, 2nd edn. 1934.
  • Roman Catholicism and Political Form. G. L. Ulmen, trans. (Greenwood Press, 1996). Original publication: 1923.
  • State, Movement, People (includes The Question of Legality). Simona Draghici, trans. (Plutarch Press, 2001). Original publication: Staat, Bewegung, Volk (1933); Das Problem der Legalität (1950).
  • Theory of the Partisan. G. L. Ulmen, trans. (Telos Press, 2007). Original publication: 1963; 2nd ed. 1975.
  • The Tyranny of Values. Simona Draghici, trans. (Plutarch Press, 1996). Original publication: 1979.
  • War/Non-War: A Dilemma. Simona Draghici, trans. (Plutarch Press, 2004). Original publication: 1937.

Works in German

  • Über Schuld und Schuldarten. Eine terminologische Untersuchung, 1910.
  • Gesetz und Urteil. Eine Untersuchung zum Problem der Rechtspraxis, 1912.
  • Schattenrisse (veröffentlicht unter dem Pseudonym ‚Johannes Negelinus, mox Doctor‘, in Zusammenarbeit mit Dr. Fritz Eisler), 1913.
  • Der Wert des Staates und die Bedeutung des Einzelnen, 1914.
  • Theodor Däublers ‚Nordlicht‘: Drei Studien über die Elemente, den Geist und die Aktualität des Werkes, 1916.
  • Die Buribunken, in: Summa 1/1917/18, 89 ff.
  • Politische Romantik, 1919.
  • Die Diktatur. Von den Anfängen des modernen Souveränitätsgedankens bis zum proletarischen Klassenkampf, 1921.
  • Politische Theologie. Vier Kapitel zur Lehre von der Souveränität, 1922.
  • Die geistesgeschichtliche Lage des heutigen Parliamentarismus, 1923.
  • Römischer Katholizismus und politische Form, 1923.
  • Die Rheinlande als Objekt internationaler Politik, 1925.
  • Die Kernfrage des Völkerbundes, 1926.
  • Der Begriff des Politischen, in: Archiv für Sozialwissenschaften und Sozialpolitik 58/1927, 1 ff.
  • Volksentscheid und Volksbegehren. Ein Beitrag zur Auslegung der Weimarer Verfassung und zur Lehre von der unmittelbaren Demokratie, 1927.
  • Verfassungslehre, 1928.
  • Hugo Preuß. Sein Staatsbegriff und seine Stellung in der dt. Rechtslehre, 1930.
  • Der Völkerbund und das politische Problem der Friedenssicherung, 1930, 2. erw. Aufl. 1934.
  • Der Hüter der Verfassung, 1931.
  • Der Begriff des Politischen, 1932 (Erweiterung des Aufsatzes von 1927).
  • Legalität und Legitimität, 1932.
  • Staat, Bewegung, Volk. Die Dreigliederung der politischen Einheit, 1933.
  • Das Reichsstatthaltergesetz, 1933.
  • Staatsgefüge und Zusammenbruch des Zweiten Reiches. Der Sieg des Bürgers über den Soldaten, 1934.
  • Über die drei Arten des rechtswissenschaftlichen Denkens, 1934.
  • Der Leviathan in der Staatslehre des Thomas Hobbes, 1938.
  • Die Wendung zum diskriminierenden Kriegsbegriff, 1938.
  • Völkerrechtliche Großraumordnung und Interventionsverbot für raumfremde Mächte. Ein Beitrag zum Reichsbegriff im Völkerrecht, 1939.
  • Positionen und Begriffe im Kampf mit Weimar – Genf – Versailles 1923–1939, 1940 (Aufsatzsammlung).
  • Land und Meer. Eine weltgeschichtliche Betrachtung, 1942.
  • Der Nomos der Erde im Völkerrecht des Jus Publicum Europaeum, 1950.
  • Donoso Cortes in gesamteuropäischer Interpretation, 1950.
  • Ex captivitate salus. Erinnerungen der Zeit 1945/47, 1950.
  • Die Lage der europäischen Rechtswissenschaft, 1950.
  • Das Gespräch über die Macht und den Zugang zum Machthaber, 1954.
  • Hamlet oder Hekuba. Der Einbruch der Zeit in das Spiel, 1956.
  • Verfassungsrechtliche Aufsätze aus den Jahren 1924–1954, 1958 (Aufsatzsammlung).
  • Theorie des Partisanen. Zwischenbemerkung zum Begriff des Politischen, 1963.
  • Politische Theologie II. Die Legende von der Erledigung jeder Politischen Theologie, 1970.
  • Glossarium. Aufzeichnungen der Jahre 1947-1951, hrsg.v. Eberhard Freiherr von Medem, 1991 (posthum).
  • Das internationale Verbrechen des Angriffskrieges, hrsg.v. Helmut Quaritsch, 1993 (posthum).
  • Staat – Großraum – Nomos, hrsg. von Günter Maschke, 1995 (posthum).
  • Frieden oder Pazifismus?, hrsg. von Günter Maschke, 2005 (posthum).
  • Carl Schmitt: Tagebücher, hrsg. von Ernst Hüsmert, 2003 ff. (posthum).

Secondary literature

  • Alain de Benoist, Carl Schmitt. Bibliographie seiner Schriften und Korrespondenzen (Berlin: Akademie Verlag, 2003).
  • Alain de Benoist, The Problem of Democracy (London: Arktos, 2011).
  • Alain de Benoist, "Schmitt in France."
  • Alain de Benoist, "Terrorism, State of Emergency: The pertinence of some Schmittian themes today."
  • Alain de Benoist, "What is Sovereigny?"
  • Alain de Benoist, Carl Schmitt Today (London: Arktos, 2013).
  • Guillaume Faye, Archeofuturism: European Visions of the Post-Catastrophic Age (London: Arktos Media, 2010).
  • Guillaume Faye, Why We Fight: Manifesto for the European Resistance (London: Arktos Media, 2011).
  • Julien Freund, L'essence du politique (Paris: Sirey, 1965).
  • Julien Friend, "Schmitt's Political Thought," Telos, vol. 1995 no. 102 (December 1995), pp. 11-42. doi: 10.3817/1295102011
  • Paul Gottfried, Carl Schmitt: Politics and Theory (New York: Greenwood Press, 1990) ISBN 0-313-27209-3
  • Paul Gottfried, Carl Schmitt (Thinkers of Our Time), (London: Claridge Press, 1990).
  • Edgar Julius Jung, The Rule of the Inferiour (Lewiston, New York: Edwin Mellen Press, 1995).
  • Günter Maschke, Der Tod des Carl Schmitt: Apologie und Polemik. Karolinger Verlag, Wien 1987, ISBN 3-85418-030-6.
  • Günter Maschke, Carl Schmitt. Staat – Großraum – Nomos, Arbeiten von Carl Schmitt aus den Jahren 1916 - 1969.
  • Günter Maschke, Carl Schmitt. Frieden oder Pazifismus? Arbeiten zum Völkerrecht und zur internationalen Politik 1924 - 1978. Hrsg., mit einem Vorwort und mit Anmerkungen versehen von Günter Maschke, Verlag Duncker & Humblot Berlin 2005, ISBN 3-428-08940-5.
  • Armin Mohler, Die Konservative Revolution in Deutschland 1918–1932 (Stuttgart: Friedrich Vorwerk Verlag, 1950).
  • Michael O’Meara, New Culture, New Right: Anti-Liberalism in Postmodern Europe (Bloomington, IN, USA: 1stBooks, 2004).
  • Tomislav Sunic, Against Democracy and Equality: The European New Right. Third Edition (London: Arktos, 2010).

See Also

Media

External Links