In , the French essayist Julien Benda published his famous attack on the intellectual corruption of the age, La Trahison des clercs. I said “famous,” but. Julien Benda’s classic study of s Europe resonates today. The “treason of the intellectuals” is a phrase that evokes much but is inherently ambiguous. Julien Benda (26 December – 7 June ) was a French philosopher and novelist. He remains famous for his short book, La Trahison des Clercs (The Tr.

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Agassi – – Philosophy of the Social Sciences 44 5: In other projects Wikiquote. The Treason of the Intellectuals.

Inintellectuals still had something definite to betray. The attack on the universal went forward in social and political life as well as in the refined precincts of epistemology and metaphysics: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Partisan in its claims for disinterestedness, it is ruthless in its defense of intellectual high-mindedness. One clear sign of the change was the attack on the Enlightenment ideal of universal humanity and the concomitant glorification of various particularisms.

Who is going to protect humanity from its own stupidity, greed, its dangerous narrow national interests and wrong choices? He was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature four times [1] and one time for the Goncourt Prize. From the time of the pre-Socratics, intellectuals were a breed apart. Want to Read saving…. The “treason of yhe intellectuals” is a phrase that evokes much but is inherently ambiguous.


The Making of Chinese Intellectuals: Paperbackpages. This article has no associated abstract.

The Betrayal of the Intellectuals

Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. Open Preview See a Problem? This polemical essay argued that European intellectuals in the 19th and 20th century had often lost the ability to reason dispassionately about political and military matters, instead becoming apologists for crass nationalism, warmongering and racism.

I feel this book leaves its arguments vaguely unfinished, and instead rests its case on historical failures and predictions, such as grand wars, which could have been explained away by other means, and often were. Outis rated it really liked it Jun 09, Julien Benda’s classic study of s Europe resonates today.

Julien Benda, The Betrayal of the Intellectuals – PhilPapers

The predictions in the work became reality in the most devestating ways holocaustbut perhaps the scary part is that is still so relevant to contemporary issues faced today. This translation is still in print from Norton. Most of the titles in the bibliography below were published during the last three decades of Benda’s long life; he is emphatically a 20th-century author.

Benda defended the measured and dispassionate outlook of classical civilizationand the internationalism of traditional Christianity. The Treason of the Intellectuals by Julien Benda. Historically, the Enlightenment arose as a deeply anti-clerical and, perforce, anti-traditional movement. In the broadest terms, The Intellectals of Thought is a brief for the principles of the Enlightenment.


Jjlien is this mature form of Enlightenment, championing reason but respectful of tradition, that Finkielkraut holds up as an ideal.

The treason of the intellectuals & “The Undoing of Thought” | The New Criterion

The author sometimes repeats himself, but this is still a very good and important book. Dorin rated it it was amazing Oct 16, If this book is reported as a work of a ‘clerc’, then it is a failure. Request removal from index. The geography of intellectual betrayal has changed dramatically in the last sixty-odd years. A worried guy looked at the landscape and tried to articulate his concerns. In this sense, the book is a trahison des clercs for the post-Communist world, a world dominated as much by the leveling imperatives of pop culture as by resurgent nationalism and ethnic separatism.

The Introduction is written in the style of some sort of Straussian cant and is a complete waste of time. Tolga Ulusoy rated it it was amazing Aug 14, Closing this intellectuls, Benda darkly predicts that the augmentation of the “realistic” impulse to domination of the material world, justified by intellectuals into an “integral realism”, risked producing an all-encompassing species-civilization that would completely cease “to situate the good outside the real world”.