Simone Weil


Simone Weil (1909–1943) was one of the first female graduates of the École Normale Supérieure and taught philosophy in provincial schools from 1931 to 1938. A socialist, she worked for a time on the Renault assembly line and volunteered to fight against the Fascists in the Spanish Civil War. In 1938, a mystical vision led Weil to convert to Roman Catholicism, though she refused the sacrament of baptism. Weil fled France for the United States in 1942, where, in solidarity with the people of Occupied France, she drastically limited her intake of food, so hastening her early death from tuberculosis.

Books
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    On the Abolition of All Political Parties

    In this famous essay, now widely available for the first time in English translation, Weil challenges the foundation of the modern liberal political order and proposes that politics can only begin where the party spirit comes to an end. The volume also includes a portrait of Weil by the Nobel laureate Czeslaw Milosz and an essay about Weil’s friendship with Albert Camus by Simon Leys.

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    War and the Iliad

    These essays do more than prove the permanent relevance of Homer’s great poem. They analyze the logic of war itself, and explore how intoxicating violence defines the human condition.