The Corner

Re: Michael Burleigh

Since John Miller brings him up, I thought I should add a few things. Michael Burleigh’s majestic book, The Third Reich: A New History was an enormous influence on me. It is a fantastic piece of work that draws considerable intellectual inspiration from Eric Voegelin’s work on “political religions.” Two other books by Burleigh, Sacred Causes and Earthly Powers,  trace the religious instinct within nominally secular politics. The religious impulse cannot be destroyed, only misdirected to areas where some people can’t see through its secular disguise. Nobody’s work has ever been more successful — as far as I am aware — at demonstrating this fundamental insight to the affairs of man.  I haven’t read Burleigh’s latest book yet, but I plan to.