Simone weil essay on iliad

The relevance of this Simone weil essay on iliad to later ages is Force thus can turn even its possessor into a thing — an unthinking automaton driven by rage or lust.

For most of the essay, she uses passage after passage to ground her central claim that the Iliad is above all a clear-eyed witness to the effects of force on the human spirit.

She was keenly interested in other religious traditions—especially the Greek and Egyptian mysteries ; Hinduism especially the Upanishads and the Bhagavad Gita ; and Mahayana Buddhism. The Poem of Strength and Pity. The following year, she took a month leave of absence from her teaching position to work incognito as a labourer in two factories, one owned by Renaultbelieving that this experience would allow her to connect with the working class.

The Odyssey may reveal the ironies produced by this detachment, as in its portrait of the different responses of Odysseus and the sheltered Phaeaceans to the tale of Troy, but both epics leave Simone weil essay on iliad doubt that hearing the struggles of others recounted in song is a joy to be savored.

She relates how the poem covers all the different types of human love — the love between parents and children, fraternal love, the love between comrades and erotic love — though the moments when love directly appears in the poem are very brief and act as counter points to the otherwise unrelenting tragedy and violence.

Clearly, the breathless reader can only learn from these pronouncements what the past meant to Weil, as she formed it into a personal spiritual map.

Simone Weil

Weil was one of the rare few who appeared to hold her own with the Red Army founder in a face-to-face debate. Some claim that her refusal to eat came from her desire to express some form of solidarity toward the victims of the war.

Perhaps you find the notion inspiring, or merely puzzling, I find it burdened with heavy assumptions about Homer - a creature about whom we know nothing. Unlock This Study Guide Now Start your hour free trial to unlock this page The Iliad study guide and get instant access to the following: However, she refused special treatment because of her long-standing political idealism and her detachment from material things.

Besides suppliants, there are other, more unfortunate inhabitants of the empire of force: The Need for Roots. Her condition quickly deteriorated, and she was moved to a sanatorium in Ashford, KentEngland. In a brief introduction, it is contextualized as a response to a defining catastrophe of the then contemporary world.

The piece is very lean in that sense. The Simone weil essay on iliad relates how the Iliad suggests that no one truly controls force; as everyone in the poem, even the mighty Achilles and Agamemnonsuffer at least briefly when the force of events turns against them.

A "synthesis" of religion implies a lower quality of attention. Now it is not an authoritative tract that speaks for itself but a classic work of literature requiring the same treatment as a Greek or Latin text. Political activism[ edit ] Leon Trotsky. We are given a French text drawn from a recent scholarly edition, to which we can compare the new, studiously faithful translation that is also provided the earlier, somewhat freer translation having been guaranteed simply by the credentials of its author, Mary McCarthy ; in addition, the text is elucidated through an introduction and a commentary.

In her brief life, Weil not only endured the fall of France but actively renounced the privileges of her comfortable life, seeking out demanding factory labor, joining the Republican forces in Spain, and fatally refusing, while an exile in England, to eat more than the rations of her compatriots in France.

She linked the Iliad to Anna Karenina and Moscow to Troy, reading I remember this made some kind of sense but twenty or so hours after reading it seems an entirely crazy parallel that makes little sense - in this scheme Tolstoy is a new Homer, both in her view transcending mere literature and creating some kind of new cultural paradigm and new cultural values.

A Catholicism which seems particularly curious asserting a link of genius between the Iliad and the Gospels view spoiler [ it is true that both feature central characters with one divine and one mortal parent hide spoiler ], throwing out with distinct vigour the Odyssey, the Aeneid and the Old Testament.

Witnesses view the suppliant as they would a dead man, at first with a shudder, then with indifference. Her home city of Paris had fallen to the Nazis, and she was living in Marseilles with her parents, waiting for an exit visa which would allow her to come to America.

The entire section is 1, words. But the Homeric world encompasses both a less austere concept of poetry as transmuting suffering into something satisfying and pleasurable and an unavoidable gap between the experiences of audiences and the events retold in poetry.

Simone Weil and Homer

She was attracted to Roman Catholicismbut declined to be baptizedpreferring to remain outside due to "the love of those things that are outside Christianity". Nearly everything that follows is evidence adduced to support the thesis. Through her passionate attunement to the way the Iliad records the evil and futility of war and her strong, heartfelt prose style, Weil does Homer a great service, commending his poem to modern readers who might not see beyond its martial subject matter.

By not making the clear connection to the one war, however, she made a clear connection to all War; to the eternal process that is inevitable when one country, one sect, one person, seeks domination over another. There is among classicists a tendency to present Weil as an exceptionally good interpreter of Homer.

However Weil goes on to describe the way the fortunes of the Greeks and the Trojans alternate seemingly at the pleasure of the gods. It is not surprising that this dimension of the Iliad was invisible to Weil, who believed that suffering is inherently ennobling and sought it for herself when she did not have to -- and is perhaps more readily apparent to those who lead the quieter, safer lives of scholars.

War and the Iliad

Synopsis[ edit ] Achillesthe most formidable warrior of the age, shown here with the fatal arrow wound he suffered during the siege of Troy.SIMONE WElL. THE ILIAD, OR THE POEM OF FORCE The Iliad, or, The Poem of Force was written in the summer and fall ofThe Chicago Review is grateful for permission to reprint this essay here.

Its theme, clearly, is as timely now as when it first appeared. Documents Similar To Simone Weil on The Iliad. Livro Fodor. Uploaded. WEIL, SIMONE, The Iliad, or the Poem of Force, Chicago Review, () p 2 Simone Weil, “The Iliad, or The Poem of Force,” in Simone Weil and Rachel Bespaloff, War and the Iliad (New York: New York Review Books, ), For Weil, the.

The Iliad Critical Essays

War and the Iliad is a perfect introduction to the range of Homer's art as well as a provocative and rewarding demonstration of the links between literature, philosophy, and questions of life and death. Simone Weil's The Iliad, or the Poem of Force is one of her most celebrated works--an inspired /5.

Essays and criticism on Simone Weil's The Iliad - Critical Essays. War and the Iliad by Simone Weil, Rachel Bespaloff War and the Iliad is a perfect introduction to the range of Homer's art as well as a provocative and rewarding demonstration of the links between literature, philosophy, and questions of life and death.

Simone weil essay on iliad
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