Weil, Simone - An Anthology
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S I M ON E W El L : AN AN TH O L OGY
SIMONE WElL ( 1 909-1 943) is one of the most important thinkers of the modern period. The distinctive feature of her work is the indissoluble link she makes between the theory and p ractice of both pol itics and religion and her translation of thought into action . A brilliant philosopher and mathematician, her life rep resents a quest for justice and balance in both the academic and the p ractical spheres. A scholar of deep and wide eru dition, she became during the thirties an inspired teacher and activist. So as to experience physical labour at first hand, she spent almost two years as a car factory worker soon after the Front Populaire and later became a fighter in the Spanish Civil War. When her home city of Paris was occupied, she joined the Resistance in the South of France and became for a time an agricultural labourer before acceding to her parents' wish to escape Nazi persecution of the Jews by fleeing to New York. Leaving America, she joined the Free French in London where, frustrated by the exclusively intellectual nature of the work delegated to h e r, and weakened by a number of physical and emotional factors, she contracted tuberculosis and died in a Kentish sanatorium at the age of thirty-four. The bulk of her voluminous
oeuvre was published
SIAN MILES was born and brought up in the bi-cultu ral atmos phere of Wales and educated there and in France where she has lived for many years. She has taught at a number of universities worldwide, including Tufts University, Massachusetts, Dakar Unive rsity, Senegal and York University, Toronto. She now teaches at \Varwick University in England . Her other p ublica
Geo rge Sand: JV/arianne; a translation of V iolet Echo; in collaboration, Paul Valery's CalziersfNote books; and Guy de Maupassant: A Parisia n Affair a nd O ther Stories (Penguin Classics).
tions include: Trefusis'
An Anthology Edited and Introduced by SIAN MILES
PENGUIN BOOKS Published by the Penguin Group Penguin Books Ltd, 80 Strand, London WC2R ORL, England Penguin Group (USA) Inc., 375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014, USA Penguin Group (Canada), 90 Eglinton Avenue East, Suire 700, Toronto, Ontario. Canada M4P 2Y3 (a division of Pearson Penguin Canada Inc.) Penguin Ireland, 25 St Stephen's Green, Dublin 2, Ireland (a division of Penguin Books Ltd) Penguin Group (Australia), 250 Camberwell Road, Cambcrwell, Victoria 3124, Australia (a division of Pearson Australia Group Pty Ltd) Penguin Dooks India Pvt Ltd, 11 Community Centre, Panchsheel Park, New Delhi- 110 017, India Penguin Group (NZ), cnr Airborne and Rosedale Roads, Albany, Auckland 1310, New Zealand (a division of Pearson New Zealand Ltd) Penguin Books (South Africa) (Pty) Ltd, 24 Sturdee A venue, Rosebank 2196, South Africa Penguin Books Ltd, Registered Offices: 80 Strand, London WC2R ORL, England www.penguin.com First published by Virago Press 1986 Published in Penguin Classics 2005 1 Copyright©Introductions and arrangements Sian Miles, 1986, 2005 All rights reserved The moral right of the author has been asserted Simone Wcil's writings are copyrighted as follows: Atte11te de Die11 0 La Colombe Edition du Vieux Colombier 1950; Waiting ou God© G. P. Putnam's Sons and Routledge & Kegan Paul
1951. renewed 1979. Cahiers de Simone Wei/ Vol I.() Librairie Pion 1951, Vol. II() Pion 1953,
\"ol Ill ©Pion 1956; The Noteboohs of Simo11e Wei/ 0 G. P. Putnam's Sons 1956. La Pesa1tte11r et Ia Grtice"' Librairie Pion 1947; Grat1ily aud Grace Q G. P. Putnam's Sons and Routledge &
Kegan Paul 1952, renewed 1980. L'E11ra