Simone Weil, the French philosopher, political activist, and religious mystic, was little known when she died young in 1943. Four years later the philosopher-farmer Gustave Thibon compiled La pesanteur et la grâce from the notebooks she left in his keeping. In 1952 this English translation accelerated the fame and influence of Simone Weil.
The striking aphorisms in Gravity and Grace reflect the religious philosophy of Weil’s last years. Written at the onset of World War II, when her health was deteriorating and her left-wing social activism was giving way to spiritual introspection, this masterwork makes clear why critics have called Simone Weil “a great soul who might have become a saint” and “the Outsider as saint, in an age of alienation.”
Introducer Thomas R. Nevin is a professor of classical studies at John Carroll University and the author of Simone Weil: Portrait of a Self-Exiled Jew.
“A book of Pascalian pensees, touching on many phases of the intellectual and spiritual worlds. Written in prose which is as unadorned as a geometry theorem, it bears clear personal traces of the young genius who was half icy intellectual, half mystic.”—New York Times
“In these private reflections, at once pregnant and precise, and all springing out of painful depths of experience, mental pride is transmuted into spiritual insight.”—Manchester Guardian