In The American Conservative, Akhilesh Pillalamarri has a brief piece on “Spengler vs. Evola”:
The apocalyptic worldview promoted by prominent political figures such as Steve Bannon in the United States and Aleksandr Dugin in Russia is premised on the notion that ordinary political and legislative battles are more than just quibbles over contemporary issues. Rather, political debates are fronts in a greater battle of ideas, and everything is a struggle for the meaning of civilization and human nature. Bannon’s worldview is preceded by the thought of two early-20th-century thinkers, Oswald Spengler and Julius Evola—and his passing mention of the latter in a 2014 speech has caused some controversy in recent weeks, including a New York Times article entitled “Steve Bannon Cited Italian Thinker Who Inspired Fascists.”
These thinkers wrote at a time when the Western narrative of progress and improvement was shattered after World War I. Interest in both Spengler and Evola has recently revived, though Spengler was always fairly well-known for his thesis that civilizations grew and declined in a cyclical fashion.
Although both Spengler and Evola shared a pessimism over the direction of modern Western civilization, they differed on human nature. Is there a way to reconcile two vastly different observations?…