Simone Weil: The development of her philosophical anthropology through a study of her life and thought.

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Title: Simone Weil: The development of her philosophical anthropology through a study of her life and thought.
Authors: Cullen, Helen E.
Date: 1995
Abstract: This thesis develops a consistent view of Simone Weil's philosophical anthropology through a study of her life and thought, and how one informs the other. I demonstrate that there is a change in Simone Weil's conception of human nature from her early thought to her later thought. However, my thesis shows that this change is a development rather than a divergence in her thinking. The thesis demonstrates that Simone Weil's philosophical anthropology remains consistently dualistic throughout her writings. This dualism changes from a mind-body dualism to a dualism that places mind within a carnal part of the soul, and establishes an eternal part of the soul as the essence of human nature. My exposition demonstrates the conception of human nature developed in her early work. Then I show how this conception forms the basis of a critique of Marxism. I present her position that a liberated society for the workers must be organized around the dualistic conception of human nature. Work with a method is conceived as an intellectual, physical, and ultimately, spiritual practice that restores labour to a principal place in a free society. I demonstrate that a free society based on Simone Weil's philosophical anthropology came to mean to her a redirecting of Western culture so as to include the other dimensions of human nature: the continuity of time transmitted through tradition of identical thought; an understanding of our place in the order of the universe; and a true conception of our relation to God. The fully developed vision of the human being in Simone Weil's later work includes a conception of the State as a metaxu (intermediary). The function of the State as metaxu is elaborated in an inquiry into the uprooted human and political conditions of her time. This thesis maintains that Simone Weil holds, throughout her work, to the ideal of a society that enhances human nature by making manual labour its spiritual core.
URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10393/9639
http://dx.doi.org/10.20381/ruor-7895
CollectionTh├Ęses, 1910 - 2010 // Theses, 1910 - 2010
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