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    The Developmental Stages of Simone Weil’s Political Philosophy: From Pacifism to a Justification of Force

    Baker, Ian J.D. (2017) The Developmental Stages of Simone Weil’s Political Philosophy: From Pacifism to a Justification of Force. Masters thesis, National University of Ireland Maynooth.

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    Simone Weil had a short but distinguished career as a French intellectual. Writing mainly between the two European wars of the twentieth century, Weil is more widely accredited for her later spiritual work. This thesis seeks instead to discuss the political aspect of Weil’s writing so that her early themes of labour and science can be charted as they develop through the later themes of oppression, liberty, power and force. I will show how her understanding of labour, liberty and science provide the foundation for her understanding of oppression and force. In charting her formal education, her Leftist syndicalist-revolutionary period and her critique of Marxism, I argue that her prolonged adherence to a pacifist position delays her comprehensive understanding of force, particularly during WWII. Importantly, it discusses the key stages chronologically, spanning the period 1925 – 1940, and relates them to the historical context of the period. This timeframe encompasses her earliest Lycée Henri- IV essays, a large proportion of her trade union journal articles, Réflexions sur les causes de la liberté et de l’oppression sociale and L’Iliade ou le poème de la force. I contend when she rejects these beliefs through a combination of maturing analysis and reflective experience that it became evident that oppression, power, and particualrly force are not only undeniable and ineradicable but at times necessary.

    Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
    Keywords: Developmental Stages; Simone Weil; Political Philosophy; Pacifism; Justification of Force;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Arts & Humanities > Philosophy
    Item ID: 11198
    Depositing User: IR eTheses
    Date Deposited: 09 Oct 2019 14:00
      Use Licence: This item is available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike Licence (CC BY-NC-SA). Details of this licence are available here

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